Former Cibolo Steele star recalls 2010 state title game

Ryan Simmons (52) is a star linebacker at Oklahoma State and teammates with former Guyer standouts J.W. Walsh and Jimmy Bean after he squared off with them in his final high school game for a state championship. (The Dallas Morning News file photo)

Oklahoma State linebacker Ryan Simmons is now good friends with his teammates J.W. Walsh and Jimmy Bean.

But on one Saturday afternoon in December back in 2010, he was going to toe-to-toe with them for the Class 5A Division II state championship when his Cibolo Steele team pulled off a narrow 24-21 victory over Guyer in both schools’ first year in the state’s largest classification.

“Ryan Simmons was their best player on the tape we had to watch that week,” Guyer head coach John Walsh said, “and he didn’t disappoint live.”

In that game, Simmons was named the defensive MVP after collecting eight tackles and an interception of Walsh after he’d dropped into the secondary in Steele’s Tampa Two scheme. The ball was thrown right to Simmons, as Walsh never saw his future teammate.

“Jimmy’s my roommate so he doesn’t really like me mentioning that too much,” Simmons said, with a smile. “Sometimes I might hint at it, but we’ve moved past that. It’s just a memory for me.”

This season, Simmons is moving back to his natural middle linebacker spot after he played outside last year.

Argyle-ex Wilson finished at Tech

Connor Wilson (11) will not play football at Texas Tech and will attend the school as a medical redshirt, Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury said Monday at Big 12 Media Days. (DRC File Photo)

Former Argyle standout and Texas Tech signee Connor Wilson, a ball-hawk safety for Argyle as a junior and senior, is finished as a football player before his career at Tech ever began.

No details were released, but Kingsbury said the 6-2, 205-pound safety, is no longer a player in Tech’s program but that he would still attend the university and be a medical redshirt, not counting against the school’s allotted scholarships.

“He’ll be attending Texas Tech on a medical redshirt, so that’s where that’s at,” Kingsbury said. “He’s done playing, but he’ll be coming to school there.”

When asked if the redshirt was just for this upcoming season and if Wilson would return to the field after that, Kingsbury had a quick answer.

“He’s done playing,” Kingsbury said.

Continuity key for Ryan’s new coaching staff

Since Joey Florence moved out of the Ryan football field house in February and Dave Henigan took Florence’s old office, a constant theme has existed during all the personnel changes during the last few months.

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The 2002 Ryan football highlight reel

For years, I’ve heard about that game.

You know, the one where Ryan scores 15 points in 45 seconds to beat Ennis in the 2002 4A state semifinals? The one where Ryan converted fourth-and 24 from inside its 5-yard line?

Well, I finally found video evidence that proves that miracles exist.

A YouTube user named Tammy Battle, the same name of the mother of former Ryan quarterback James Battle, uploaded a highlight video from the 2002 season.

The first play you see is Battle heaving a pass down the left sidelines to William Dowdy, and the comeback was on. Don’t overlook that miraculous onside kick recovery. If your jaw doesn’t drop after you see the Ryan player snatch the ball from the air with one arm inches from the sidelines, call me at 940-566-6869 and we’ll talk (Also, if you know the nickname for that game, please call me and let me know).

Ryan defeated Ennis 18-14 and went on to win the 4A Division II title with a 38-8 win over Brenham.

If the itch for the start of the football season has become unbearable, here’s the highlight reel from the 2002 season.

North Texas standout Patrick Cobbs joins staff at Ryan

Former North Texas standout running back Patrick Cobbs will join the Ryan football coaching staff this fall. (DRC file photo)

One of North Texas’ greatest football players will be returning to Denton this fall.

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UIL officially moves state basketball tournaments to San Antonio

Ponder celebrated its 2014 Class 2A boys basketball state title at Austin's Frank Erwin Center. The University Interscholastic League announced on Tuesday that the location of the boys and girls state tourneys was moving from Austin to San Antonio. (Michael Ainsworth/The Dallas Morning News)

The University Interscholastic League finalized plans on Tuesday afternoon to move the 2015 girls and boys state basketball tournaments to San Antonio’s Alamodome.

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Guyer’s backup QB Moore goes back to Prosper

The once crowded quarterback derby at Guyer heading into the 2014 season is suddenly much clearer.

After the Guyer coaching staff moved last season’s backup to Texas freshman Jerrod Heard, David Haynes, to wide receiver full-time, the starting job under center was in the hands of sophomore transfer Shawn Robinson, who started as a freshman for Saginaw Chisholm Trail last season.

Prosper move-in David Moore was set to be Robinson’s backup and had a solid performance in Guyer’s spring game. Now, Moore is headed back to Prosper before his career at Guyer ever got started.

“It wasn’t really my decision,” said Moore, who started the regular-season finale for Prosper as a sophomore, going 8-for-9 for more than 200 yards and two touchdowns. “It was more for my mom and her personal reasons, she wanted to go back and I just said, ‘all right.’”

Guyer head coach John Walsh said the decision was made due to some family health concerns.

“David and his family are moving back to Prosper due to some family health issues,” Walsh said. “David worked hard during his time at Guyer, and we wish him well.”

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Former Sherman head coach Gary Joe Kinne hired as Denton assistant coach

Denton High added another high profile assistant to its football coaching staff this summer.

Gary Joe Kinne has accepted an offer to join the Broncos, according to Denton ISD spokesperson Sharon Cox.

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Ryan-ex Mario Edwards Jr. named to Bednarik Award watch list

Florida State junior defensive end Mario Edwards was named to the Bednarik Award watch list on Monday afternoon by the Maxwell Football Club. (Stephen Morris/Associated Press)

Former Ryan standout Mario Edwards Jr. was named to the Bednarik Award Watch List on Monday.

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Guyer-ex Rhame doing well on Dodgers’ farm

Jacob Rhame pitches for Guyer in a playoff game against Plano in 2011. Now, he's in the Dodgers organization and doing well. (David Minton/Denton Record-Chronicle)

Jacob Rhame took a roundabout way to get to the professional baseball ranks, but not an uncommon one.

The hard-throwing righty hoped to be drafted out of high school and wasn’t. He went to Oklahoma, pitched just 10 innings as a freshman and left for Grayson College. In Denison, Rhame pitched well for Dusty Hart & Co. and earned a scholarship to Texas State. Instead of going to become a Bobcat, Rhame was drafted in last year’s draft with the Los Angeles Dodgers’ sixth-round pick.

Rhame’s time at Grayson transformed him, physically and mentally. He changed his body, getting in better shape and ending his time there at 6-foot-1, 195 pounds, and he also got a better mental approach and admitted back on draft day that he had a bit of an entitled view on baseball when he signed with the Sooners out of Guyer. At Grayson, Rhame was 7-3 with a 1.85 ERA in 14 starts (87 1/3 innings).

So far, Rhame’s career has gone well in the Dodgers’ organization.

Last year, he spent the entire season in the Rookie Pioneer League and made 20 appearances with a 4.58 ERA. He struck out 21 batters in 19 2/3 innings and walked nine — numbers with room for improvement but also showing some promise.

This season, Rhame began the year in Low-A Great Lakes (in Midland, Michigan) in the Midwest League, and he’s pitched even better at the next level.

So far for the Loons, the 21-year-old Rhame has notched three saves and a hold in 28 appearances with a 3.60 ERA. The number that sticks out most for the hard-throwing righty is his K:BB ratio of 40 strikeouts to nine walks in just 35 innings. Any time you have more strikeouts than innings pitched, you’re doing something right, especially if you see yourself as possibly being a reliever at the big-league level.

It’ll be interesting to keep an eye on Rhame, and see where he progresses. The next step up in the Dodgers’ organization would take him to High-A Rancho Cucamonga.