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2022 Prep Football Preview: CovCath two-way starter needs to be team leader on both sides of the ball

The NKyTribune is featuring a player on each of the 21 high school football teams in Boone, Campbell and Kenton counties leading up to the first games of the 2022 season on Aug. 19. We will then provide focused coverage of our local teams throughout the regular season and into the playoffs.

By Terry Boehmker
NKyTribune sports reporter

Covington Catholic senior linebacker Aiden Jones said one of the reasons he made a commitment to play football at West Point was the way the Army team plays defense. As you might expect for a military academy, it’s a fast-paced, aggressive style of play that Jones said is similar to his high school team.

“CovCath football has always been about defense — playing fast and strong, everybody getting to the ball, and being physical when you get there,” Jones said. “It’s something we’re known for.”

CovCath linebacker Aiden Jones, left, tries to corral Beechwood quarterback Cameron Hergott in a game between the neighboring rivals last season. (Photo by Bob Jackson)

Jones was the second-leading tackler on last year’s CovCath team that held eight of its last 10 opponents to 14 points or less, made it to the quarterfinals of the Class 5A playoffs and finished with a 9-4 record.

The 6-foot-3, 240-pound inside linebacker had 12 tackles against Beechwood and matched that in a playoff loss to Woodford County that put his season total at 83.

As one of three returning defensive starters, Jones needs to be a team leader once again for the Colonels, who didn’t make it to the final four in the state playoffs for the first since 2016.

“I think this year we’re definitely motivated from that,” Jones said. “We know we could’ve made it farther than that and think we can make it farther this year. If we all work together and grind every day, hopefully we can get our goal.”

In his first two varsity seasons, Jones made 52 tackles as a sophomore and 83 as a junior. He needs 65 to reach 200 for his career, but a lot of that depends on the first-year starters in the CovCath defensive lineup. If the newcomers are able to make stops, opponents will be less likely to target Jones in blocking schemes or avoid running plays in his area.    

Aiden Jones

“I think my physicality along with my aggressiveness help me make tackles and get to the ball,” he said. “I can also run so I’m good at getting into space and getting to the ball.”

Jones will also be a starting offensive tackle once again this season. He’s one of four returning starters on that side of the ball for the Colonels, who lost the top three rushers on last year’s team to graduation, including quarterback Preston Agee.

“We’ve got a couple guys who saw the field a little bit last year and some other guys who need to step up and fill those spots,” Jones said of the vacancies in his team’s starting lineup.

Before the season starts, CovCath head coach Eddie Eviston calls players into his office to discuss their role on the team. Jones expects the coach to give him the same message as last year.  

“Last season, he pulled me in and said to me and a couple other guys who were going both ways that we had to lead the team and be warriors,” Jones said.

2021 SEASON: 
 9-4 record, lost in third round of Class 5A playoffs.
DISTRICT:  Class 5A, District 5 with Boone County, Conner, Cooper, Highlands.
HEAD COACH:  Eddie Eviston (112-27 in nine seasons overall, 77-19 in seven seasons at CovCath).

Aug. 19 – ELDER (Ohio), 7 p.m.
Aug. 27 – at Pikeville, 7 p.m.
Sept. 2 – at Lexington Catholic, 7 p.m.
Sept. 9 – at Dixie Heights, 7 p.m.
Sept. 16 – BEECHWOOD, 7 p.m.
Sept. 23 – at Cooper, 7:30 p.m.
Sept. 30 – at Boone County, 7 p.m.
Oct. 14 – HIGHLANDS, 7 p.m.
Oct. 21 – CONNER, 7 p.m.
Oct. 28 – at Ryle, 7 p.m.

Other NKyTribune prep football previews:




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