Braswell’s Moore hires DC

 

Cody Moore, the first head coach of Denton’s fourth high school, the yet-to-open Braswell High School, has made his first big hire to his football staff.

Moore, who previously served as the offensive coordinator at Rockwall before landing the Braswell job, tabbed Bryan O’Neal to be his defensive coordinator. In order to take the job, O’Neal resigned his position as head coach at Nevada Community, a 4A-Division II program where he’s been the past eight years. The Braves went 4-6 in 2015.

Moore said on Wednesday that O’Neal’s addition is a key one in beginning the new program.

“This is my most important hire,” said Moore, who has an extensive offensive background. “I’ve known him for a long time. I know what he’s about and we share a lot of the same ideas and the same vision. We’re on the same page. He’ll be an outstanding role model for our kids. He’s just very well respected in the coaching community, and he’s gonna do a great job.”

Robinson holds firm as Scout’s No. 1 QB

 

Denton Guyer High School quarterback Shawn Robinson (3) throws a pass as he is pressured by San Angelo Central High School defensive tackle Jordan Schellhase (41) during the second quarter as Denton Guyer High School hosted San Angelo Central High School at AT&T Stadium in Arlington on Friday, November 27, 2015.  (Stewart F. House/Special Contributor)

Denton Guyer High School quarterback Shawn Robinson (3) throws a pass as he is pressured by San Angelo Central High School defensive tackle Jordan Schellhase (41) during the second quarter as Denton Guyer High School hosted San Angelo Central High School at AT&T Stadium in Arlington on Friday, November 27, 2015. (Stewart F. House/Special Contributor)

Depending on which recruiting service you look at, and when you do it, there’s been a pretty consistent game of tug of war between Guyer junior quarterback Shawn Robinson and fellow junior signal caller Tate Martell from famed Bishop Gorman in Las Vegas.

My boy Greg Powers of Scout.com just tweeted out the newest set of Scout rankings for the 2017 class, and Robinson sits atop the quarterback perch and checks in at No. 11 in the Scout 300 — the top 300 players in the country. Martell is No. 13 overall, and both players earned the coveted five-star ranking from Scout.

Here’s what Scout’s Brian Dohn wrote about Robinson, who is coming off a bit of a “sophomore slump” his junior season in his second season at Guyer after playing his freshman season at Saginaw Chisholm Trail.

Shawn Robinson, a 6-foot-2, 205-pounder from Denton (Texas) Guyer, is verbally committed to TCU. He picked the hometown Horned Frogs over offers from a host of national names and fits well in the Sonny Cumbie / Doug Meachem offense.

Powers wrote the following as a more in-depth look at what the TCU pledge brings to the table.

Robinson has all of the tools that you are looking for in a young quarterback prospect. Physically and mentally he is prepared for the next level. Had a tough time picking the area of improvement for his profile. Has the true ability to beat you with his arm or his legs any snap. He works well outside the pocket extending plays and will find receivers before just taking off when things break down, but when he does run he is a threat to score.

These accolades are nothing new for Robinson, who helped lead Guyer to the regional final in Class 6A Division II this past season despite an up-and-down season. When it was showtime in the playoffs, however, Robinson was at his best.

Former Ryan standout, Williams, commits to SMU

Ryan senior defensive lineman J.T. Williams (5) sacks Fossil Ridge quarterback Jacob Gnacinski (4), Saturday, November 30, 2013, at Apogee Stadium in Denton, TX. David Minton/DRC

Ryan senior defensive lineman J.T. Williams (5) sacks Fossil Ridge quarterback Jacob Gnacinski (4), Saturday, November 30, 2013, at Apogee Stadium in Denton, TX. David Minton/DRC

While the Ryan faithful will be celebrating one defensive tackle that donned #5 this season when Ken McLaurin signs on the dotted line with SMU on Wednesday, another former #5 made news late Monday when he, too, committed to play for the Mustangs.

Former Ryan standout J.T. Williams, who last played for the Raiders in 2013, has decided to leave Trinity Valley C.C. and commit with the Mustangs. Williams announced his decision via his Twitter account just after 6 p.m., and the news has already been picked up by several media outlets.

The 6-2, 290-pound Williams was a key figure for the Raiders when they finished 10-3 in 2013 and advanced to the fourth round of the Class 5A playoffs before losing to Cedar Hill. According to 247Sports, Williams had 37 tackles, three for a loss, with two sacks in 2015.

A funny thing happened on UIL realignment day

Ryan head coach Dave Henigan on the sideline against Justin Northwest, Thursday, October 29, 2015, at C.H. Collins Athletic Complex in Denton, TX. David Minton/DRC

Ryan head coach Dave Henigan on the sideline against Justin Northwest, Thursday, October 29, 2015, at C.H. Collins Athletic Complex in Denton, TX. David Minton/DRC

I wasn’t able to get this anecdote into our coverage on the UIL biennial realignment — which will be in tomorrow’s paper  — but it’s worth mentioning that I spent the majority of this morning trailing behind Ryan coach Dave Henigan as he tried to fill his non-district schedule for the next two years.

I had heard rumblings prior to today that there weren’t many teams waiting in the wings to play Ryan, which is not only coming off a 13-1 season, but is dropping from Class 6A to 5A while returning the bulk of its roster. Can anyone say state title contender?

Monday only proved those rumblings were true.

After the initial district unveiling, Henigan realized he not only needed to fill one nondistrict spot, but because he was now lumped in with a 7-team district, he needed to find one more on top of that. From my vantage point, it appeared Henigan was told no at almost every turn.

To make a long story short, Henigan got his four games filled (Lancaster, Mesquite Poteet, Wylie East and Frisco Lone Star), but he didn’t fill the Poteet spot until just before 10:30 a.m., nearly an hour and a half AFTER the initial unveiling of districts.

Here’s what Denton school district athletic director Joey Florence had to say (because we all know he’s been through this a time or two, as well).

“There were times where we’d be here [at UIL realignment] until 1 p.m., and there’s Allen, Lufkin, Longview, DeSoto and Denton Ryan … and no one wants to play each other,” Florence said with a smile. “He [Henigan] is getting a taste of that. Maybe he shouldn’t win so many games.”

Somehow I doubt that last comment meets Henigan’s job description.

What you need to know: Allen

Allen defense celebrates safety

The Allen defense celebrates a safety against Arlington Martin last week in the third round at AT&T Stadium. (Courtesy photo, Dallas Morning News)

Here it is … Ryan vs Allen in the Class 6A Division I Region I final. I could spew forth all sorts of stats and figures on Allen’s 56-game win streak, 3 straight state titles, and why the Eagles are so good (they are REALLY good), but I wouldn’t be telling you anything you don’t already know.

What I can tell you that most people wouldn’t have figured earlier in the year is that at 13-0, Ryan absolutely deserves to be in this game. And it’s a safe bet that while the Raiders have turned a lot of heads during their playoff run, they likely aren’t going to be picked by many people to knock off the champs.

Will Ryan shock the world? You’ll have to wait until tomorrow to find out.

My advance will be in tomorrow’s DRC, so please pick up a copy or at least read it online. Follow me on Twitter @NewspaperSteve for live updates from Jerry World. In the meantime, here are some quick need to knows.

The Game: Ryan (13-0) vs Allen (13-0), 2 p.m. Saturday at AT&T Stadium in Arlington.

Series record: Allen leads the series 1-0. The last time these two played was in 1995.

What happened last week: Ryan beat Amarillo Tascosa 41-34. Allen beat Martin 36-11.

What to expect: Allen, the heavy favorite, will be ready for this game as it shoots for its fourth straight state title. Ryan needs to play error-free if it plans on staying in this game. As Ryan coach Dave Henigan said earlier this week, and I believe it to be true, a great equalizer is that Ryan also knows how to throw and catch. Spencer Sanders is playing great and has plenty of receivers to throw to. Big plays are needed, plus a couple of huge breaks, for this to become a game for the ages.

Final say: Ryan fans will love my pick below, my cohorts in the media and everyone else in Texas will likely tease me. But I truly believe Ryan has a chance in this game. It’s a slim glimmer of hope, and they need to play out-of-their-minds perfect to pull it off, but it can happen. Plus … Ryan is 13-0, too. I have picked them to win in every game this season. I may not know a lot, but I know enough to know this team finds a way to win. Just ask their previous 13 opponents.

Score prediction: Ryan 49, Allen 48

Weekend recap: Winner-winner, chicken dinner

Denton Guyer High School cornerback Dio Williams (38) celebrates an interception in the end zone to help secure the win in front of San Angelo Central High School wide receiver Cal Vincent (7) during the fourth quarter as Denton Guyer High School hosted San Angelo Central High School at AT&T Stadium in Arlington on Friday, November 27, 2015.  (Stewart F. House/Special Contributor)

Denton Guyer High School cornerback Dio Williams (38) celebrates an interception in the end zone to help secure the win in front of San Angelo Central High School wide receiver Cal Vincent (7) during the fourth quarter as Denton Guyer High School hosted San Angelo Central High School at AT&T Stadium in Arlington on Friday, November 27, 2015. (Stewart F. House/Special Contributor)

Can you believe it? Every team in our coverage area playing in the third round won this week (with one still to play). Can’t say I saw that one coming (looking at you, Krum!). I think it’s safe to say this is the most teams we’ve ever had playing in the fourth round of the playoffs, and it’s come in a year we expected to be a down year for the area as a whole when the season began.

Without further delay, let Steve and I take you on a trip down memory lane to just a couple of days ago with our weekly recap.

Guyer vs San Angelo Central

AB: For a quarter, it looked like Guyer would once again literally run away with another playoff victory. Myron Mason had two touchdown runs early, including a long one, to give the Wildcats a pretty quick 14-0 lead over the seemingly overmatched Bobcats from West Texas. Then, Guyer allowed a kickoff return TD, and it was game on. Shawn Robinson wasn’t himself, and even got benched for a series in the third quarter, but to his credit he came back in and busted his one big run of the day — an 80-yarder —to set up a remarkable Hail Mary from 3 yards out (if that’s possible) to freshman wide receiver De’Vion Harmon to take the lead for good. Guyer pushed its lead to two scores in the closing minutes with a 75-yard score from Mason but Central rallied and had the ball throwing to the end zone to tie it as time expired. It was a gutty win for Guyer, whose offense wasn’t at full tilt, but the Wildcats got a great performance from its defense, led by PJ Broussard, Michael Carrillo and Dio Williams, against a really potent Central passing attack. Now, it’s on to the fourth round, a round in which Guyer is 5-0 all-time.

SG: Guyer found itself in a dogfight against San Angelo, saw its starting quarterback benched for a short period in the second half, and still found a way to come out with some late-game heroics in a 35-27 win. I wasn’t at this game so I’m not going to speculate on the reasons why Shawn Robinson was pulled in favor of Luke Stillwell. But whatever the reason may be, I expect Walsh and Robinson to figure it out by the time this Saturday’s game against Mansfield comes around. The Wildcats are still alive to fight another day, but Robinson and his ability to do the near impossible are a key factor in whether or not Guyer moves on to the state semifinals. This isn’t the time to let inner strife get in the way.

Ryan vs Amarillo Tascosa, Today

AB: My buddy Steve had to play the waiting game, and what seemed like a logical conclusion the whole time was finally reached officially on Saturday morning. Now, the Raiders finally get to hit the field in Amarillo on Monday afternoon against a 10-2 Amarillo Tascosa team with its throwback offense, similar to the one run by Amarillo against Guyer in 2013. Those old-school West Texas squads aren’t as athletic as Guyer or Ryan, so they try to play keep-away and keep their team in games, and that’s what Tascosa will do today. Ultimately, I think Ryan will be too much for Tascosa, they’ll improve to 13-0 on the season and have a battle of undefeated teams on Saturday against Allen. That’ll be fun.

SG: I’m here in Amarillo and in a few short hours I’ll be covering the third-round Class 6A Division I slugfest between Ryan and Tascosa. It’s hard to tell just how good Tascosa (10-2) really is. The Rebels run a triple option attack, which if you didn’t know, isn’t used often. That will be a challenge for the Raiders’ defense, plus the fact there are no common opponents to compare against. I have to believe Ryan is ready for this showdown, and for the first time in quite some time, I think many of my fellow experts agree. Offensively, Ryan has proved itself time and time again and picked up big wins over Plano East and South Grand Prairie to set up this showdown. Should Ryan win this game, too, it will set up a quick turnaround to face Allen on Saturday. It will be the toughest challenge the Raiders face, but first, you got to knock off Tascosa. Follow me for updates on Twitter (@NewspaperSteve) starting at 3 p.m.

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Quick thoughts on Raiders playing Monday

Ryan head coach Dave Henigan on the sideline against Justin Northwest, Thursday, October 29, 2015, at C.H. Collins Athletic Complex in Denton, TX. David Minton/DRC

Ryan head coach Dave Henigan on the sideline against Justin Northwest, Thursday, October 29, 2015, at C.H. Collins Athletic Complex in Denton, TX. David Minton/DRC

As most of you may know (because I already tweeted it out, as did other media outlets) the decision was made shortly after 8 a.m. this morning to officially move the Ryan at Amarillo Tascosa third-round playoff game to 3 p.m. Monday. The game was originally slated to kickoff at 1 p.m. today at Dick Bivins Stadium in Amarillo, but the weather — and roads — are simply too dicey.

Let me address the elephant in the room real quick, because yes, a Ryan win over Tascosa means a quick turnaround to face Allen in the next round. That game is already set for 2 p.m. next Saturday at AT&T Stadium.

Here are some comments from Ryan coach Dave Henigan.

“You can’t control the weather,” Henigan said. “We wanted to play on Saturday all along, but it’s not about the game, it’s about the safety of the players and the fans driving up. When you take all that into account, it was an easy decision for our administration.”

As for the Allen game, Henigan added, “It’s one of those things. … Bottom line, whichever team wins is going to have a short week. It is what it is.”

This isn’t the first time Ryan’s football team has played on a Monday. Two years ago, the Raiders had their playoff game against Cedar Hill at Apogee Stadium moved to Monday due to similar icy roads. I remember because I ate it in the parking lot on my way up to the press box. The only difference was that the game was local.

You have to think, once again, a lot of time and thought went into the latest decision. So grin and bear it, and hopefully I’ll see ya out there. I’ll be in the press box as usual!

 

What you need to know: Amarillo Tascosa

The Dallas Cowboys and Miami Dolphins meet on the icy field of Texas Stadium on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 25, 1993 in Irving, Texas.  (AP Photo/Glenn James)

The Dallas Cowboys and Miami Dolphins meet on the icy field of Texas Stadium on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 25, 1993 in Irving, Texas. (AP Photo/Glenn James)

So do you like the picture? Could Ryan and Amarillo Tascosa be playing in similar conditions tomorrow? This is what we know so far. The game was originally slated for a 1 p.m. kickoff on Saturday and Ryan was scheduled to leave this afternoon for Amarillo.

But … they have delayed their departure to at least tomorrow morning due to inclement weather that has caused unsafe travel conditions West of us. Officials from both Denton and Amarillo ISD will make a call tomorrow morning. The game could be played Saturday or pushed to Monday, but either way it’s almost a certainty it will remain in Amarillo. There have been kickoff times thrown around on Twitter. Perhaps they are correct, but from what I’ve heard, nothing is set in stone until tomorrow morning.

For those asking, the UIL doesn’t allow games to be played on Sundays. Stay tuned to Twitter. If you aren’t following me already, you should! When I know, you will know. In the meantime, here are some need to knows …

The Game: Ryan (12-0) at Amarillo Tascosa (10-2), Time/Date TBD at Dick Bivins Stadium in Amarillo.

Series record: This is the first meeting between the two schools.

What happened last week: Ryan beat South Grand Prairie 43-35. Amarillo Tascosa beat Odessa Permian, 17-10.

What to expect: In a game with ice and snow, who knows!? Tascosa utilizes the triple-option and is really good at it. I mean they did knock off Permian, which some say is a shocker but others say not so much. With two rushers with at least 634 yards and a quarterback who has rushed for 450 yards, expect them to continue that run, run, run philosophy in hopes of tiring out the Ryan defense. I’ve heard Tascosa uses anywhere from 8-10 runners in a single game. With that said, the Rebels have never won three playoff games in the same season and are facing an unbeaten Ryan team that has shown it can win in a variety of ways. I doubt either team is afraid to play in the snow and ice, it’s just getting out there that may be a problem for Ryan at the present moment.

Final say: As the old saying goes, there are no turkeys after Thanksgiving. The winner of this gets either Allen or Martin, and I have to think it’s going to be Ryan. No offense to Tascosa or its fans, it’s just that I’ve simply seen this defense enough times to know they are hard to beat regardless of the situation. If you can find a way, more power to you.

Score prediction: Ryan 35, Amarillo Tascosa 24

What you need to know: San Angelo Central

Guyer junior quarterback Shawn Robinson (3) throws against Southlake Carroll, Friday, November 20, 2015, at Eagle Stadium in Allen, TX. David Minton/DRC

Guyer junior quarterback Shawn Robinson (3) throws against Southlake Carroll, Friday, November 20, 2015, at Eagle Stadium in Allen, TX. David Minton/DRC

Well, we already got into the Guyer-San Angelo Central prep on Wednesday with a pretty sweet Q&A with former Central beat writer Quinton Martinez. But we can’t break tradition now, so here’s our weekly standard breaking down what you need to know about Guyer’s upcoming opponent.

It’s Game 13 now, so there are no more pushovers, especially not in Class 6A, and Central is no joke. The Bobcats are 11-1 with their one loss coming to Abilene in a game that saw the Eagles run all over Central. Of course, Guyer is coming off a game that saw it run for 544 yards against the Southlake Carroll Dragons. It’s going to be a fun chess match of a game between two potent offenses with different identities, so let’s get to it.

The Game: San Angelo Central (11-1) vs. Guyer (9-3), Friday, 2 p.m., at AT&T Stadium

Series record: The teams have never met. It almost happened last year, but Guyer was beaten by the Dragons in the area round before Carroll decimated the Bobcats’ defense. For what it’s worth (which is nothing), Guyer head coach John Walsh and a lot of his staff members are 6-0 all-time against the Bobcats from their days with Brownwood.

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Know your enemy: San Angelo Central

 

Patrick Dove/Standard-Times Central High School's Brennen Wooten leaps over Permian defenders and into the end zone for a touchdown Friday night to extend their lead during a District 3-6A game at San Angelo Stadium.

Patrick Dove/Standard-Times
Central High School’s Brennen Wooten leaps over Permian defenders and into the end zone for a touchdown Friday night to extend their lead during a District 3-6A game at San Angelo Stadium.

I’m a big fan of questions, and I’m also a big fan of answers. That’s why I enjoy about my colleague Brett Vito’s weekly Q&A with the UNT opponent’s beat writer. So I thought since this week’s Guyer opponent is pretty unfamiliar to the Metroplex, I’d attempt to do the same thing.

There was only one problem, Central’s beat writer at the San Angelo Standard-Times, Quinton Martinez, left to take a job in Corpus Christi recently, and current beat writer Charles Bryce debuted on the job just last week. So, I entrusted the departed Martinez to be my subject, and boy, he provided some really good information.

So, without further delay, here it is, with Martinez’s answers in italics:

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