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.

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.

Guyer’s Wallace commits to Iowa State

Guyer junior defensive back Jordan Wallace (11) drags down Highland Park receiver Remy Kell (9), Saturday, December 14, 2013, at Eagle Stadium in Allen. (David Minton/Denton Record-Chronicle)

Guyer safety Jordan Wallace recently got his first FBS (Football Bowl Subdivision) offer from Iowa State, and after a weekend visit to Ames, Iowa, with his family, Wallace decided to make it official, verbally at least.

It makes perfect sense. After all, Wallace is the second cousin of former All-World Cyclones QB Seneca Wallace, who as a Tech alum, I know all too well from his days of making his personal highlight reel against the Red Raiders.

Wallace is a rangy, lengthy safety who has all the makings of a big, ball-hawk playmaker in the back of the Cyclones’ secondary. Last season as a junior at Guyer, he was a big reason for the Wildcats’ improved secondary, and in turn, improved defense from previous seasons.

As a junior, Wallace had 86 tackles with 10 behind the line of scrimmage and 10 pass breakups.

He said playing in the Big 12 has long been a dream of his.

“It’s pretty awesome because my cousin Seneca went there,” Wallace said. “I get to follow in his footsteps. Big 12 football is what I want to play. I like that style. Growing up in Texas, that’s what you know.”

Look for more on Wallace’s commitment in Tuesday’s Denton Record-Chronicle.

Ramacher leaving football, Oklahoma State

 

Former Guyer standout Dominic Ramacher, second from left, has chosen to leave the Oklahoma State football program. (David Minton/Denton Record-Chronicle)

What used to be four is down to two in terms of former Guyer football players who signed with Oklahoma State. J.W. Walsh is set to be the Cowboys’ starting quarterback, and Jimmy Bean is looking to have a breakout year in his second season to start at defensive end.

But Josh Stewart left the program a year early to enter the NFL draft, later signing as a free agent with Tennessee before tearing his Achilles tendon and being released, and now Dominic Ramacher, who signed with the Cowboys the year after the aforementioned three, is leaving the program and the school to pursue other opportunities.

Ramacher was the hidden gem of the 2010 team’s potent offense as an H-back who was a punishing blocker in Guyer’s running game before moving to middle linebacker in 2011 and becoming an all-district performer. He signed with OSU as a fullback, redshirted and moved to defense last season and was a contributor on special teams.

Ramacher announced the decision on his Facebook page, saying he’s quitting football and leaving Stillwater, but still plans to go to school and get a degree in audio production.

Talking to folks at Oklahoma State, as well as Guyer coach John Walsh, it sounded like Ramacher had a shot at competing for a starting linebacker spot in 2014, but college football is a big-time commitment and it’s easy to see how it would be a huge weight on one’s shoulders.

Ramacher always came across as a kid with much more on his mind than football, and it’s always been obvious he’s a very bright kid who could be successful in a variety of arenas. You just hope, for his sake, it’s not a decision he might regret years down the road. Judging by his words, it seems like it was well thought out, though. Best of luck to him.

What to Watch for: Guyer spring game

 

Guyer running back Anthony Taylor scores a touchdown in Guyer's state semifinal win over Highland Park on Dec. 14, at Allen Eagle Stadium. (David Minton/Denton Record-Chronicle)

The annual tease known as spring football comes to an end tonight, as the two-time defending Class 4A Division I state champion Guyer Wildcats will play their annual spring game at 6 p.m.

While the coaches have already done all of their evaluating over the past few weeks in spring practice and don’t really care too much for tonight’s game, it’s most for the fans, so here’s a little guide of what to watch for if you’re heading out to Guyer tonight.

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Guyer, Allen set for Apogee date

One of the most hyped nondistrict matchups in the state will now be played in Denton on the opening weekend of the high school football season.

Guyer, the two-time defending Class 4A Division I state champion, will face two-time defending Class 5A Division I champion Allen on Friday, Aug. 29 at UNT’s Apogee Stadium as part of the Tom Landry Classic, Guyer head coach John Walsh said Tuesday.

The game was originally scheduled to be played at Allen’s Eagle Stadium, but construction and concrete issues at the $60 million stadium has forced the game to be moved from the soon-to-be two-year-old stadium. It was announced Tuesday that Allen will play all of its home games in 2014 in Plano.

Guyer played at Apogee, which opened in 2011, for the first time during its 2013 playoff run when it defeated Birdville. Allen has never played at the stadium.

The game will feature a matchup of highly-ranked quarterbacks in Allen’s Kyler Murray, the No. 1 dual-threat QB in the country according to 247Sports. Guyer has a host of highly-rated quarterbacks battling for the top spot, highlighted by super-sophomore-to-be Shawn Robinson and David Moore, not to mention the still-rehabbing Kevin Dillman, who’s committed to Nebraska.

5-4A softball still has some suspense

Guyer pitcher Shayne Starkey and her teammates have a playoff spot locked up, but their seeding is still up in the air. (David Minton/Denton Record-Chronicle)

Yes, it’s true. The four playoff teams in District 5-4A have been decided for quite some time now. Azle wrapped up the district title last week, even with its thrilling 13-inning loss to Fort Worth Brewer. After that, there’s still quite a bit of suspense — not with who will be playing in the postseason, but what seed they’ll be.

A quick glance at the 5-4A softball standings with one game remaining on Friday (state rankings are included, when applicable):

1. No. 15 Azle (12-1); 2. No. 14 Fort Worth Brewer (10-3); 2. No. 26 Guyer (10-3); 4. Trophy Club Nelson (9-4); 5. Wichita Falls (5-8); 6. Lake Dallas (3-10); 7. Denton (2-11); 8. Wichita Falls Rider (0-13).

Friday’s games: Azle at Denton; Lake Dallas at Wichita Falls; Wichita Falls Rider at Guyer; Trophy Club Nelson at Fort Worth Brewer

That last game is the one meaningful matchup on the regular season’s final day. In their previous meeting, Nelson was outhit but took advantage of six Brewer errors to pull off a 7-6 win at home. If Nelson can repeat the feat and win at Brewer, and everything else goes according to plan with the other games, Guyer would have the No. 2 seed locked up and would open the postseason against Saginaw.

If Brewer beats Nelson, and assuming Guyer handles winless Rider, that would put Brewer and Guyer in a tie for second place with a season split between the teams. Normally, teams might just flip for seeding, but with an entire week before the playoffs begin, and powerhouse Aledo looming for the third-place team in the second round, the teams will play a game to determine who gets the second seed out of the district. That game would be played Tuesday at Brewer at 6:30 p.m.

If you remember, Aledo eliminated Guyer in the second round of the postseason last year and returns everyone from that squad. I’m sure Guyer head coach Keith Medford would welcome a chance at payback, but it makes sense to want that second seed in the district.

A Nelson win over Brewer makes the Lady Bobcats the third seed and pushes Brewer to fourth. The third seed from 5-4A would draw Saginaw Chisholm Trail in the first round of the playoffs, while the fourth seed would draw powerhouse Birdville. Whatever happens, you can bet 5-4A is going to be well represented in the postseason. They’ve had three ranked teams the entire season and if the draw falls right it wouldn’t be unreasonable to see an Azle-Guyer regional final with a state tournament berth on the line.

So, if you’re a Guyer softball fan, you’re a Nelson fan on Friday night. Dress accordingly. Hint: Your school colors are basically the same.

 

Guyer clinches a playoff spot out of 5-4A

Guyer first baseman James Farris (left) is congratulated by teammate Daulton Horton after a home run in Friday's win over Trophy Club Nelson. (David Minton/Denton Record-Chronicle)

With the Guyer baseball team’s 7-2 win over rival Lake Dallas on Tuesday night, and a little bit of help from Azle, the Wildcats clinched a playoff spot with three games remaining in the regular season. For Guyer, now it’s all about seeding and pecking order, and well, trying to avoid finishing third or fourth and facing Saginaw Boswell or Birdville in the first round of the playoffs.

Guyer is now in second place by itself, and if the Wildcats can take care of the eliminated Wichita Falls Rider Raiders on Friday, will have a matchup for first place in 5-4A next Tuesday at home against first-place Wichita Falls Coyotes. Rider is out of the playoffs for the first time since 2001, according to our friend Zach Duncan at the Times Record News. Guyer already beat the Coyotes once this season, and with a win would have the season sweep.

Here’s a look at the current 5-4A standings with three games to play:

1. Wichita Falls (9-2); 2. Guyer (8-3); 3. Trophy Club Nelson (7-4); 4. Lake Dallas (7-4); 5. Azle (4-7); 6. Wichita Falls Rider (4-7); 7. Fort Worth Brewer (3-8); 8. Denton (2-9).

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Guyer getting yet another quarterback

There’s embarrassment of riches, and then there’s the Guyer quarterback situation.

The Wildcats were set to finally start David Haynes as a senior after he waited behind Jerrod Heard for the past two seasons. Haynes is a guy that’s grown up in the middle school system and has been raved about since he was a freshman by the Guyer coaching staff.

Of course, last year, he showed to be so athletic he became one of the Wildcats’ leading receivers and has interest from several Football Bowl Subdivision schools at both positions.

Then, of course, there’s Kevin Dillman, the Swedish move-in from California who committed to Nebraska last weekend. Behind those two, there’s a move-in from Prosper named David Moore and Austin Luna, who unfortunately broke his wrist in a weightlifting accident on Monday. Now, they’re adding another quarterback to the mix, and it’s a biggie.

Saginaw Chisholm Trail is losing the star of its program, and Guyer is the beneficiary as Shawn Robinson, a 6-3 dual-threat superstar who started at Chisholm Trail as a freshman last season and led the young program to a 3-7 season, will enroll at Guyer on Tuesday, according to Guyer head coach John Walsh.

Robinson is the son of new Guyer girls basketball coach Andrea Robinson, who was hired away from Cedar Hill last month. His father, and Andrea Robinson’s husband, Othell Robinson was Chisholm Trail’s offensive coordinator. He will be hired next week at Guyer as the tight ends coach. According to stats on the Star-Telegram’s website, Robinson threw for 1,123 yards and 11 touchdowns while tossing seven interceptions. He also rushed for 624 yards and six scores — again, as a freshman and on a less than stellar team.

Andrea Robinson won two state titles at Fort Worth Dunbar and went to state another time, then took Cedar Hill to the state tournament in Class 5A.

Robinson was just a freshman this past season but made an impact and is now one of the top college prospects in the still-to-be-determined Class of 2017. Spring football is set to begin at Guyer on April 28, and Haynes is going into the spring as the starter.