FORT SMITH (KFSM) - Derrick Wise doesn't look like your typical spread offense quarterback. And he, and he is coach, don't try to pretend that he is.
"Deuce is a running back by trade and as a quarterback I've just seen a guy that has gotten so much more comfortable making the decisions and especially in throwing the football," Northside coach Mike Falleur said. "Even though we don't throw it a ton, he makes the right decisions and puts us in a good situation."
Eli Bolton is often in the backfield with Wise as the team's starting running back and he said he loves having 'a second running back' beside him.
"That's the best part about it," the senior Bolton said. "He's a running back too so he has those qualities and you got to catch him. If you can't catch him then he can throw it."
Wise always seems to come up with the big play when the Grizzlies need it most and he's a big reason why Northside is in the semifinals for the first time since 2005.
"Really just practice on my throwing, working on my reads, watching a lot of film," Wise said. "Seeing what I can do to make plays for my team."
Northside has reeled off three straight wins, including a 30-17 upset of 7A-West champion Bentonville in the quarterfinals last week. Now the Grizzlies get a second shot on Bryant, even though the first one was a bit odd.
That contest was called in the second quarter due to weather conditions. Since it was a 7A-Central contest, the 16-7 score had to stand despite not even reaching halftime.
"The key to getting it done is just focus, no turnovers and play every play like it's your last," Wise said.
Northside travels to Bryant on Friday.