By: Ryan Kelly | WCTV Eyewitness Sports
September 4, 2018
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- The Rattlers struck often in Saturday's 41-7 dismantling of Fort Valley State, with an explosive offense that kept all 20,000 at Bragg Memorial Stadium wanting more.
But, this Saturday, a much bigger task is at hand for Willie Simmons' squad; a road trip to Alabama to play Neal Brown's Troy Trojans.
It hasn't been lost on Simmons that his Rattlers will go from the hunters to the hunted.
"It's kind of a turn of the tide. Fort Valley State came into here last week as a underdog, less travel guys than we had dressed out," Simmons said. "It'll be the same this week, we'll travel less guys and Troy will be able to dress out this week to so it'll be a test of if we can endure them for four quarters."
In the late 90's, the Rattlers and Trojans were no stranger to each other, clashing often in the FCS (then I-AA) playoffs.
Simmons is also no stranger to Brown, as the have crossed paths several times before.
Simmons says he's expecting to see a lot of the same concepts his Rattlers use from the Trojans.
"We know each other really well, we were rivals back when I was a position coach at Middle Tennessee State and he was the offensive coordinator at Troy," Simmons said. "We both coached under Tony Franklin, who is one of the revolutionary guys in the spread offense so a lot of what we do offensively on both sides with both teams is a result
of what we learned under Tony."
Despite the two school's 1990's heyday, Simmons seems determined to leave the past in the past and let his Rattlers try to write their own chapter.
"I think it's a great opportunity for this program and for this football team and for these young men," he said. "Whenever you have a chance to go make history, that's something you look forward to."