Browning era in Greenville begins Friday night against Park Crossing

Published 1:07 pm Thursday, August 25, 2022

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EDITOR’S NOTE: The following story is one of 12 football preview stories to be featured in our upcoming The Playbook 2022 high school football preview magazine. The magazine will be published and provided with the Sept. 7 edition of The Greenville Advocate and the Sept. 8 edition of The Lowndes Signal and The Luverne Journal.

New Greenville head football coach Patrick Browning takes the reins of a Tigers program that finished 8-4 in 2021 and reached the second round of the Class 5A playoffs.

Browning, who posted a 42-7 record as head coach of Pike Road for four seasons from 2018-2021, led the Patriots to a 14-0 campaign culminating in a 5A state championship, according to information available via the Alabama High School Football Historical Society website, Greenville competes in 5A, Region 2.

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He said he’s excited about the challenges ahead for the Tigers and added the community has been supportive as he gets to know his players.

“As a coach, you’re always looking for challenges and new opportunities to continue pushing yourself, and honestly felt like we had done all we can do, so I was ready in my life to move on to the next chapter,” Browning said. “Moving forward, these guys, again, I can’t begin to describe how excited I am to see these guys on Friday night start performing. They work extremely hard, they’re naturally tough, and just from getting them to know us as we’re getting to know them, it’s been a fun process.”

Browning inherits a squad of players he had experience game-planning against in his previous coaching job. The upcoming season gives him an opportunity to build upon the foundation left behind by previous head coach Josh McLendon.

“I remember telling our coaches (last season) that when we won our second round game, that we all hoped Greenville would lose because that’s one team we didn’t want to see,” he said. “The amount of talent that was on the field was just unbelievable. The kids played extremely hard, they were tough, and they were naturally strong.”

He added many coaches coming into a program will want to incorporate certain characteristics into the mix.

“There’s a lot of different philosophies and a lot of different ways to do things,” Browning said. “All of them are right, it’s just what you believe in and what you can instill in your kids to believe in. I think the biggest factor for us right now for the season is how we practice and how we handle adversity in games. I’m telling the kids all the time, ‘It’s all about the response.’”

As Browning works to install his offensive scheme, he said he’s been working with both Andre Davidson and Christian Hill throughout the summer.

“Both those guys have competed extremely hard this summer,” Browning said. “Anytime you install another offense, there’s a learning curve for just about any type of quarterback, but both those guys, they’ve done a really good job doing what we’ve asked them to do.”
Browning said he believes in coaching the quarterbacks really hard because it’s the most pressure-packed position to play in all sports.

“We try to replicate as much adrenaline kicks in practice as we can so that when Friday night actually gets there, the adrenaline doesn’t overtake their minds, because that’s a position that, you want them to be reactive, but there’s still a lot of thinking involved from the start to finish of a play,” Browning said.

Greenville opens its season Aug. 26 at Tiger Stadium against Park Crossing.