2022 FFN Preseason Tour: Southside

Simpson returns to Southside after two seasons away.
Simpson returns to Southside after two seasons away.(KAIT-TV)
Published: Aug. 15, 2022 at 12:08 PM CDT
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SOUTHSIDE, Ark. (KAIT) - Southside won nine games in their final season in the 4A-2. The Southerners will head to a new conference with a new head coach. Kenny Simpson returns as Southside’s head coach after spending the last two seasons at Searcy.

“My personal journey has been a little unique but again, I’m in a situation where I’m around kids that I love and get to do something I enjoy doing and just blessed to be here,” Simpson said.

The Southerners now make the jump to the 5A East.

“We were pretty intentional this summer, trying to go visit a lot of the camps where a lot of our conference opponents are going to be, so our guys got to see them and got to experience what that’s gonna look like,” Simpson said. “We’re not naive, we understand we’re stepping up a level but our kids I think are going to embrace that change.”

“We’re going to have to change our gameplan a little bit, like play a faster type of gameplan,” senior defensive back Johnathan Strother said. “We really just want to go as far as we can. It’s our first year of 5A, we’re just trying to get as far as we can.”

“We’re more of a team this year than we were last year, like the energy is higher at practice,” senior linebacker Adam Denison said. “We’re more excited to prove what we can do this year because we’re always underestimated, but especially moving up into the 5A. People don’t think much of us but they’re gonna be surprised.”

Southside opens their season at home August 26 against Pocahontas.

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