Spring Tour 2023: East Feliciana

Friday evening, on the Gridiron Football Spring Tour, I decided to go to East Feliciana High School in Clinton, Louisiana for their spring game against Collegiate Baton Rouge. The Tigers are one of the big sleepers this upcoming season at the 2A level in Louisiana because of their offensive skill talent headlined by 6’7 tight end Trey’Dez Green, who is committed to play for LSU in both football and basketball.

“I just want to give thanks to God. Without God, there would be nothing. It’s been a blessing to commit to my home school and to stay in the boot. They are not only focused on football. They are worried about my academics and that played a big role in me committing to them. The nutrition is great and they are just family.”

“You are getting a versatile player. I don’t like to put a lot on myself, but you are going to get 110%. Geaux Tigers!”

East Feliciana 4 Star TE Trey’Dez Green on committing to LSU

The two sport star that is ranked number one in the state for both sports sat out the spring game, but that did not limit the offensive fireworks that were on display most notably coming from versatile running back/slot receiver Stanley Gilmore, who had a dominating performance with four touchdowns on offense and an interception on defense.

“When you talk about Stanley Gilmore, he is a kid that can do anything. You can put him at running back, quarterback, wide receiver, H-Back. He is our go to guy on offense.”

East Feliciana Head Coach Darius Matthews
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While Green and Gilmore will be looked upon for big plays in the Tigers’ offense, there is a third dynamic player to add to the list in this dynamic trio.

“When we talk about John Barley Dawson, he is our Taysom Hill. He can play quarterback, running back, fullback, and linebacker. That’s what makes us so hard to deal with because we have so many guys that you just can’t concentrate on one kid. Tonight was a good example. Without Trey’Dez, we were still explosive. Most teams that we ran into last year tried to take Trey’Dez away, but they found out that we have a bunch more players that can make plays so that’s a great thing about our team.”

East Feliciana Head Coach Darius Matthews

JB Dawson had some big runs during the spring game while also throwing a deep touchdown pass as well. A Dawson throwing a touchdown pass is very familiar to Tiger fans as his older brother Mills Dawson threw for close to 60 touchdowns the last two seasons playing for the Tigers and also played his final high school football game as a Gridiron Football All-American at Orange Beach, Alabama. The elder Dawson will start his college career at Mississippi Prep as I got the chance to talk to him at the spring game.

Former East Feliciana QB Mills Dawson in the Gridiron Football All-American Bowl Game (Photo taken by Jason Saucier)

“It was awesome and a great experience. I definitely recommend it to anybody that gets the chance to do it. Orange Beach was an awesome time.”

Former East Feliciana QB Mills Dawson on playing in the Gridiron Football All-American Bowl Game

With all of these playmakers, the offense certainly cannot get it done without the big guys up front as the Tigers showed their size and strength in establishing the run while clearing the path for Gilmore to hit the open field.

“Those guys have been playing with each other the last three years so we put a lot of expectations on them. You talk about a guy in Treveon Green, which is Trey’Dez’s first cousin, who is 6’4, 315 pounds that can move and then you have another kid on the other side in Amauri Barnes that is 6’4, 330 pounds and can move. Then, you talk about a kid in Robert Washington, who is 6’3, aggressive and very physical. We got Davien Irvin, who is going into our third year as a center. You have to be excited about those guys. They put the challenge on and they want the challenge. Stanley says that he wants 1,500 to 2,000 yards, and they said that they were going to help him get it. Kudos to them, but I still want them to get better and every day, we are going to work to get better.”

East Feliciana Head Coach Darius Matthews

The same can be said for the defensive side of the football. While the offense may be one of the most explosive in the 2A and below level for Louisiana, defense wins championships and Coach wants to continue seeing improvement on that side of the football.

“Defensively, we flew around and ran to the football. That was the biggest thing. We wanted everybody running to the football. We wanted to make sure that we knew where to line up at, being able to call the defense, and understanding situations, down and distance, etc. The young guys did well. A few times, we had to make an adjustment, but knowing what sets to come out in and what to expect out of them, they showed a lot of growth, but we want them to get better. Our goal is to just continue to get better.”

East Feliciana Head Coach Darius Matthews

That message from the Tigers head coach Darius Matthews is constant not only to the defense, but the rest of the team as well at the end of spring.

“Our thing is to get better every day. If we can get better every day, our goal is to get the boot. We have been to the semis twice so we never walked on that carpet and that’s our goal. That’s what I set our standards and expectations to get to.”

East Feliciana Head Coach Darius Matthews

I also would be remiss if I do not mention the Collegiate Prep Dolphins. Entering another season with the team, Coach Charlie Brooks is doing an excellent job at a new program and there are a lot of things to look forward to watching this season. Haidyn Moten is a player that is a sleeper in the Baton Rouge area and is definitely talented enough to play on just about any team around in the area. The Dolphins also have some good skill players to build around including Treymontae Jones, Tayvion Williams, Jamarienta Battley, and Melik Johnson. Expect the Dolphins to make nice strides for their program in 2023.

Check out our latest Spring Tour destinations below!