Q&A with Airline football coach Justin Scogin

By LEE BRECHEEN, Louisiana Football Magazine

Coach, how is the season going so far?

Coach Scogin: We are 2-3 on the season and a couple of bounces our way from being 4-1 right now. We struggled Week 1 against a very good team in North DeSoto and came back with wins over really good teams Benton and Natchitoches Central where we really played well.

Tell me about your leaders of this team.

Coach Scogin: I think senior wide receiver Daxton Chavez, senior Cameron Jefferson, senior offensive lineman Reed Hawsey, senior Mark Engelke, and senior Justin Epps (who is injured but should be back in late October) make up a great unit of leadership for this team.

I noticed Chavez, Class of 2023, is having a great year.

Coach Scogin: He’s having an incredible year for us. Right now after five games he has 35 catches, 672 yards and 11 touchdowns. He is doing a great job for us.

Coach, who else do you like to talk about on offense so far this year for your team?

Coach Scogin: Wide receiver Cameron Jefferson (Class 2023) is also having a great year as a receiver with 14 catches for 160 yards and two touchdowns. We also have him running the ball at times and he has seven rushes for 35 yards with one touchdown. He does it all for us on offense. What’s amazing is he missed two games this year with an injury.

Defensively, who has stepped up for the team?

Coach Scogin: A kid named Jeremiah Boudreaux, who we moved from wide receiver to cornerback in the fall, really has helped us a lot as a big-time leader for the program. Also, senior Chris Montgomery is a leader for us, a very talented kid at cornerback.

From watching film, what other programs have impressed you, teams that you haven’t played so far in 2022?

Coach Scogin: (Laughing) Everyone left on the schedule! Captain Shreve has been winning as of late, the last few years a great program. Haughton has been to the playoffs like over 25 years in a row it seems, or more. Byrd was in the state title game two years ago. Parkway was in the quarterfinals in 2021 and Southwood, man, they are really improved and better.

What have you learned about coaching in North Louisiana coming from South Louisiana?

Coach Scogin: I have coached now in south Bossier and north Bossier. I learned that everybody loves Airline sports programs. Wherever I go, I meet someone who has a family member that went to the school in the 1960s, 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, and we have sellout crowds even on the road.

What do you think of your fan base?

Coach Scogin: We have incredible fans. We sold out our allotment at home; that’s our great community here in Bossier, because win, lose or draw, they have our back as fans.

What are your thoughts on your current coaching staff?

Coach Scogin: We have an unbelievable staff here. From top to bottom, it’s strong. It is stronger than even I anticipated.

Your quarterback is having a great year. Please tell us about sophomore Ben Taylor.

Coach Scogin: Ben is doing a great job this year. His stats are crazy through five games. He has 1,322 yards passing, with 18 touchdowns and just five Interceptions. Four of those interceptions came in Week 1 against North DeSoto. Really talented young man.

What does the team need to do to improve for the rest of the season?

Coach Scogin: We just need consistency and execution. Be able to do what we run in practice when the lights come on; execute in Class 5A games.

You played for Leesville back in the day, but not primarily as a football guy. What was that like playing as a high school athlete?

Coach Scogin: I did not play much football but did play a lot of baseball. I was proud to be a Wampus Cat; it was awesome. I bleed Black & Gold. Back in the day I was a third baseman.

Are you following LSU this year? I know you’re a big fan since you grew up loving sports.

Coach Scogin: I think Coach (Brian) Kelly is doing a great job. They have a pretty good offensive staff, and they hit the jackpot hiring defensive coordinator Matt House from the Kansas City Chiefs. Once the offense catches up to the defense, they will be special.

My last and most important question: what gives you a positive attitude as a coach every day?

Coach Scogin: I would have to say my wife, Bonnie. She gives me the strength every day when things are not going perfect, and she is supportive of me being a coach every day. I stay positive because of her.

Tell me about the rest of your family.

Coach Scogin: We have a 4-year-old son Brady, and in January we will welcome another family member who’s on the way.

HOT OFF THE PRESS, QUICKLY ON YOUR SCREEN:  For insight on every Louisiana high school and college football team, info on the state’s top senior prospects, and more, you can order the 2022 Louisiana Football Magazine at LaFootballMagazine.com – offering North Louisiana and South Louisiana editions, printed or digital. Magazines are ready for shipping immediately.

Contact Lee at lbrecheen@aol.com