Things looked dicey for Edna Karr last Friday in the last 100 seconds of the Cougars' 4A quarterfinal game at St. Thomas More.
Trailing by three points (31-28), Karr was backed up at its own 7 with time running out.
That's when QB Devante Noil called on WR Jarrell Bennett twice: first, on a 71-yard pass down the left sideline, and then on the game-winning slant across the middle.
"Our coaches say big-time players show up in big games," said Bennett, who was clearly in charge of hyping up his teammates during the pregame festivities. "'Speedy' (Noil) checked off to me on the go route (for the 71-yard gain). They didn't expect us to go long on the short side of the field."
Bennett and teammate Standish Dobard ('13 TE) combined to catch 16 passes in the 35-31 win over St. Thomas More.
"Stan had a good week of practice and was due for a breakout game. After Stan fumbled (following his first reception), I told him to keep his confidence up and told Speedy to keep his confidence in Stan," said Bennett. "Speedy is a gamer. He's a special kid and I'll go to war with him any day."
This week, Bennett goes head-to-head in the semis vs. Lutcher three-star CB Jordan Batiste.
"To be the best, you have to beat the best," explained Bennett. "I've faced good competition like Cortez Johnson (now at Arizona) and Dwayne Thomas (four-star LSU commit)."
Bennett is pleased that Arizona hired Rich Rodriguez as its new head coach.
"Before he got the job, the thought crossed my mind that he would get it," said Bennett. "I'm excited and pumped up about playing in the same offense that he ran at West Virginia and Michigan."
Bennett spoke with the Arizona staff "two or three days ago." He plans to take an official visit in the near future.
He has unfinished business on the upcoming agenda, though.
Karr reached the 2010 state finals and finished as runner-up to Franklinton. This year, the Cougars were Scout.com's preseason No. 1 in 4A but struggled out of the gate - losing three of four.
Since that 1-3 start, however, Karr has reeled off nine consecutive wins.
"We went from being the hunter (last year) to the hunted (beginning of this season)," said Bennett. "We fell off the map after losing those early games."
The Cougars have proudly regained their "hunter" status and hope to feast on Bulldogs - the Lutcher Bulldogs - tonight at home.