PARIS (KFSM) - If the Paris Eagles were in any other conference in 3A, they'd like be a favorite to win the league. But the Eagles are in what might be the deepest 3A conference you've ever seen.
"I’ve never seen anything like this," Paris coach Bryan Hutson said. "This is the SEC of I guess football in the whole state. I know the 7A-West is tough with all those schools but for 3A football it doesn’t get any more difficult than this."
Paris won six games in 2013 despite having only one returning starter when the season began. That experience will be huge with the gauntlet of a schedule the Eagles face this fall.
"We have six teams that are in the top 20 in the state in just our conference," senior Grant Hutson said. "I think every team is a playoff team. There’s only five spots to battle for."
The Eagles return 16 starters, eight on each side of the ball, but with that returning experience brings high expectations.
"It raises a lot of expectations," senior Ben Nix said. "We’re expected to do more and we’re planning on rising above our expectations that we have so far."
Just because they aren't one of the league favorites for the first time in recent history, that doesn't mean Paris isn't expecting to finish near the top of the league standings.
"It will be tough as always with Charleston and Booneville but as long as we can compete with them, I’ll think we’ll have a really good run at the playoffs," senior Eric Sarmiento said.