COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - Led by junior quarterback D.J. Riles, the Carver Tigers are 6-0.
Carver plays Hardaway at Kinnett Stadium on Friday with first place in region 2-4A on the line. Riles, one of the premier dual-threat quarterbacks in the state of Georgia, will lead the high-powered Tiger offense on the field.
“This year, he’s thrown the ball better. Last year we didn’t throw the deep ball that well, but this year I think he’s thrown five touchdowns over 40 yards. That’s a big jump for us because that’s what our offense is predicated around, trying to get the ball down the field,” said Carver head coach Corey Joyner.
Riles' improved passing game has helped him secure offers from Kansas, East Carolina and Akron. He took over the Tigers' offense last year from senior Jaylen Joyner.
“Even last year I felt comfortable, following Jaylen. He taught me a lot. Taking everything he taught me, and coach, I’ve been ready,” said Riles.
Carver has lit up the scoreboard this fall, totaling over 50 points in three of its six games this season. The Tigers are averaging 47.6 points per game. Riles' strong play has translated into great team chemistry on and off the field.
“He’s really stepped into his role, we all rally behind our quarterback,” said junior linebacker James Jackson.
For now, all that matters for the Tigers is the next game against Hardaway. One of the biggest games the city of Columbus has seen in recent years. Bragging rights on the line.
If Carver can pass this week’s test, there’s no telling how far Riles and the team’s lethal offense will take them.
“I think we can win state,” said Riles. “We’ve got to practice hard and keep watching film on our opponents.”