PERKINSTON, MS (WLOX) - When asked if Jack Wright has ever coached a tight end like Denzel Carter, the Gulf Coast head coach smiled.
“I’ve had a couple really good tight ends, maybe not any quite that tall," Wright said. "But he’s definitely paid off the last two weeks.”
All six-foot-five, 275 pounds of him.
“They wanted to put me at (defensive end)," Carter said of his high school days. "But then I was just like, nah. I want the ball in my hands.”
It’s hard not to miss the Florida native, and lately, that’s held true on the stat sheets as well. The Gulf Coast tight end caught his first three touchdowns of the year - all in the last two weeks.
“Honestly, I’ve been involved in the passing game, I just (didn’t have any) touchdowns. I’ve got a couple catches already," said Carter, who has eight receptions for 65 yards on the year. "I knew when we get in a goal-line (situation) and they call the play for me, I most likely know it’s coming for me. I’m gonna make sure I get open.”
If he’s been involved in the passing game, what took him so long to cross the pylon?
“I don’t know," Carter laughed. "You gotta ask Chance that.”
Carter is just the latest beneficiary of the play of Chance Lovertich.
The Gulf Coast quarterback set a school record with six passing touchdowns against Southwest, and is completing passes at 75.6 percent, which would be good for second-best nationally if he averaged a few more attempts (the NJCAA qualifies quarterbacks who have played in 60 percent of their teams games and average 15.0 attempts per game, and Lovertich averages 14.3 in six appearances). He has thrown ten touchdowns to just one interception on the season.
“That’s the key word when you talk about Chance is efficiency,” Wright said. "That’s getting the offense going, that’s converting key passes, that’s being aggressive when we have the opportunity.”
Carter and Lovertich are two key players in MGCCC’s recent offensive outburst. The Bulldogs (5-2, 2-2) limped out to an early 0-2 mark in South Division play, putting up just thirteen points in each loss. However, behind Lovertich’s recent surge, the Bulldogs have scored 56 and 27 points in their last two games, both wins.
Lovertich is splitting time with Lowell Narcisse at quarterback. The LSU transfer has completed 45.8 percent of his passes for 506 yards to go with three passing touchdowns and one interception, but has scored six times on the ground as well.
“They’ve both had flashes of brilliance," Wright said. “It’s a tough situation to be in for myself, but I wouldn’t want it the other way where you don’t have any good quarterbacks. They both deserve to play, they’re both really good quarterbacks and we’re fortunate to have both of them.”
“I think that’s just kind of how I was raised, just keep working," Lovertich said of the quarterback competition. "Over the summer, we had a (quarterback transfer prospect from UNC) in here, I knew that coming in it was going to be a competition. That’s all you gotta realize in college, it’s going to be a competition. Nothing’s gonna be handed to you, and I don’t want it handed to me. I want to work.”
The Bulldogs now turn their attention to a heated rivalry contest against Pearl River (1-6, 1-4). Kick off from Dobie Holden Stadium set for Saturday at 2 p.m.