Guyer’s Sutton commits to Illinois State

Guyer junior defensive end Jalen Sutton (17) and senior linebacker Michael Carillo (32) bring down Mansfield junior running back Kennedy Brooks (5), in a UIL Class 6A Division II state quarterfinal, Saturday, December 5, 2015, at Dragon Stadium in Southlake, TX. David Minton/DRC

Guyer junior defensive end Jalen Sutton (17) and senior linebacker Michael Carillo (32) bring down Mansfield junior running back Kennedy Brooks (5), in a UIL Class 6A Division II state quarterfinal, Saturday, December 5, 2015, at Dragon Stadium in Southlake, TX. David Minton/DRC

Just days after Guyer added another big-time college commitment to their list, a somewhat under-the-radar player made a commitment of his own on Tuesday when defensive end Jalen Sutton committed to Illinois State.

The Redbirds compete in the Football Championship Subdivision (formerly Division I-AA) in the Missouri Valley Conference along with known powerhouse North Dakota State, which just produced rookie NFL quarterback Carson Wentz.

In other words, there are plenty of big-time players in the FCS, as you can see when you look at the NFL Draft list on an annual basis. Now, Sutton appears to be lining himself up for that same chance after emerging late as a junior after his playing time increased due to some injuries on Guyer’s defensive line.

After entering a prominent spot in Guyer’s defensive line rotation late in the year, the rangy defensive end was in on 22 stops, including nine behind the line of scrimmage and two sacks. He also had a pass breakup and nine quarterback hurries.


Football: A Long Time Coming…

Braswell High School football players on the school's first ever football practice

As coaches, players and athletic trainers drove to C.H. Collins Athletic Complex early Monday morning, the lights of the stadium were lit, and for a second, it seemed like it was just hours before a Friday night kickoff.

However, the players that would take the field in an hour had never taken a snap with each other.

Braswell High School, the Denton school district’s newest high school, held its first practice where they’ll host opponents this year.

“It’s been a long time coming, and I don’t know about y’all but I have chill bumps,” Braswell athletic director and head football coach Cody Moore said to a room full of 72 juniors and sophomores.  “What better atmosphere to practice in than C.H. Collins?”

Unlike most programs beginning practice today, Coach Moore and his staff have to start from scratch. That means Moore had to address his team with a 15-slide PowerPoint presentation on what it means to be a man, student and a Braswell Bengal — in that exact order.

“It’s going to be a grind,” Moore said. “It’s part of the process. We as coaches have absolutely no idea what any of you guys in this room can do on a football field, but we’re going to find out these next few weeks.

“Everyone is going to work offense and defense. I don’t care if in the past you’ve played one position your whole life. I need to see where each and every one of you will succeed to ultimately do the same on the football field on Friday nights. Nobody decides what we’re going to be but us.”

The cards are against the Bengals, and they’re well aware of it. They’re a new program. They’re pulling kids from multiple schools who have never played together before. They didn’t get the chance to have spring ball, among many other negatives the naysayers will indicate throughout the season.

There are a lot of unknowns with this program, but Monday’s practice was a small step in the right direction to a product the coaching staff and the team can be proud of.

O’Neal hopes for physical defense

Defensive Coordinator Bryan O’Neal, who has had a longstanding friendship with coach Moore, is optimistic about the players he has lining up on his side of the ball. His priority is communication, and good communication means they’ll be closer to becoming the physical defense O’Neal wants later down the road.

“We just want to be able to communicate what we want to do on both sides of the ball without having to think about it,” O’Neal said. “We’re going to make communication second nature. Alignment and hustling on and off the field is the only bar we’re aiming to set. We’ll figure out the rest of it as we go.”

The Bengals will run everything out of a base 3-4 scheme, hoping to confuse spread offenses by plugging the middle, while also keeping an extra linebacker to block the passing lanes.

“We’re obviously at square one with our scheme, and getting that taught [to the players],” O’Neal said. “With all the intricacies, how we communicate, to down to what the positions are called; it’s just a lot of square one stuff, but fundamentally, just in terms of football, we took a step in the right direction.”

Quarterback Questions

Coach Moore coached quarterbacks at Rockwall, and throughout practice it was evident his eye was on the position.

There are a lot of athletes who claimed themselves at the quarterback position on Day One, but Moore has no idea who will take the first-team reps when the Bengals scrimmage Fort Worth Western Hills in two weeks.

“We’ve got some guys who can throw the ball, but in our offense it’s all about execution,” Moore said. “We believe this scheme has some promise if the guys buy into it.”

During the 2014 season, under coach Moore’s direction, Rockwall posted record numbers, earning the No. 1 spot in Class 6A in the state with 548.7 yards per game.

“It’s proven,” Moore said. “The guy under center plays a big part in the success of it.”

JIMMY ISBELL can be reached at 87-781-0379 and via Twitter at @Jimmy_Isbell12.

Motivation Begins

Denton High School football players hit the field before sunrise on the first day of fall practice

As much as Monday represented the official start to a new season for the Denton Broncos, it was also head coach Kevin Atkinson’s first opportunity to motivate his entire team in a several months.

The night before the start of practice Atkinson can never sleep. Unable to go to bed until after midnight with a 3:30 a.m. wakeup time, he is like a kid on Christmas Eve, too excited for the day ahead.

Finally, his alarm rings and Atkinson gets in a 45-minute workout full of running and weight lifting before he has his breakfast protein shake and heads up to the Denton High School field house, where he plans for the morning ahead and writes a to-do list for after practice.

This habit of his has been entrenched in him for a long time – a routine similar to the foundation he and his coaches are trying to instill in their young team that it will need to have complete grasp of by the first game of the season.

Often times throughout practice, Atkinson takes time to huddle the team and spend a few minutes motivating them and Monday was no different.

“I just told them that we just have to keep getting better, pay attention and have a lot of effort,” Atkinson said. “Those types of things are kind of laid out in the offseason, but you have to always coach effort I think, especially this day and age. Some people say you shouldn’t have to coach effort. It’s hot and you have to get up here early, so you have to motivate them a little bit.”

Atkinson made it clear to his team that self-motivation never stops and stressed just how important the process is to the end goal.

He also told a small story as the group of intently-listening players leaned forward in excitement and encouragement.

“There’s an old Indian story about a little brave that comes up to his chief all concerned and he says, I have two dogs barking in my head. One is barking the right thing to do and one is barking the wrong thing to do. The chief said we all have two dogs barking in our heads. The brave said, which one wins and the chief said the one that you feed the most,” Atkinson said.

A lot of learning on the first day of practice is sink-or-swim to Atkinson. Some kids catch on faster than others, but it’s up to the coaches to gauge where each player is and modify their approach.

As much as the pain of last season’s playoff loss to Aledo still haunts them and as ready as they are to get pads on at the end of the week, it’s natural for some players to be chomping at the bit and impatient.

“It is frustrating,” senior linebacker Eric Borst said. “You’re antsy because we expect to go to the playoffs now after going the past two years but it’s good to learn the basics, especially for the people not practicing religiously, they kind of forget the basics and how to make a tackle so that when we get back to the playoffs those mistakes don’t come.”

“It’s definitely a race. When we’re going through this, all we want to do is put pads on and hit and do our thing.”

For senior offensive lineman Grant Polley, who recently committed to Colorado, fundamentals still are fun to him.

“The basic stuff is the best stuff.” Polley said. “That’s your foundation and that’s what you always rely on when you play. I’m glad they are switching it up some. We’re going to get a lot out of it and switch it up from the daily grind we’re used to.”

With padded practices beginning Friday and the Broncos’ first game against Lake Dallas on August 26th, there isn’t time to waste according to Atkinson.

“I talked to them today about how everybody that is taking the practice field this Monday or next Monday around the state has aspirations of a state championship in December,” Atkinson said. “We have to match our work ethic with our dreams, otherwise what are you doing. Are you just dreaming or you actually matching the work to reach those dreams?”

PATRICK HAYSLIP can be reached at 940-566-6873 and via Twitter at @PatrickHayslip.

Football: Raiders clicking after first fall practice

Ryan head football coach, Dave Henigan talks to his team after the first day of practice.

Ryan head football coach, Dave Henigan talks to his team after the first day of practice.

At this time last year, Ryan High School had experienced players back at several key positions, and a handful of younger guys eager to make plays. Yet there were still questions coming off a year that saw the Raiders miss the playoffs.

They went on to prove their critics wrong in 2015 with a 13-win season in the state’s largest classification, and on Monday morning, hit the field for their first fall workout with 15 returning starters and a target on their back as one of the favorites to compete for a championship in Class 5A.

“Sometimes you come out the first day and it feels like you are re-teaching everything, whereas today we were flowing right into it,” said Ryan coach Dave Henigan, who cautioned his players after practice to not get caught up in the fact they are ranked No. 1 in every preseason poll he’s seen so far. “The kids have played and they know how we’re supposed to practice. The retention was good, so it was good for a first day.

“It’s great that our program is being recognized, but it’s not about that. It’s about where are you at the end.”

Per UIL rules, Monday was the first day teams that did not participate in spring football were allowed to hold fall practice. The first day teams can hold padded workouts is Friday.

There aren’t many questions at Ryan, and the strength of the team appears to be its defense. Eight starters return on that side of the ball, including three Football Bowl Subdivision recruits in linebacker/running back Tyreke Davis (North Texas), defensive tackle Earnest Brown IV (Northwestern) and versatile defensive back Delano Robinson (SMU).

Ryan allowed 15.8 points per game in the regular season last year.

“I feel like we went 100 percent the entire time,” senior cornerback Randy Gray said. “Coming back, you can always forget a couple of things, but overall we did a good job.”

Loaded defense gets more help

As if Ryan’s defense didn’t have enough returning starters in the fold, the unit benefited from two move-ins this offseason. And both are expected to make an immediate impact.

Javaris Steward, a senior, played for Ryan as a sophomore before moving to California for family reasons. He played his entire junior season for Pomona (Calif.) but returned to Ryan in March. The 6-3, 245-pound Steward, who has since de-committed from UCLA, can play both tackle and end for the Raiders.

Dayton LeBlanc, a 6-1, 270-pound junior defensive lineman from Petal (Miss.), transferred to Ryan when his father, Derrick LeBlanc, was hired as a defensive line coach under new North Texas coach Seth Littrell. Dayton started on the offensive line and played a little bit of defense last year for Petal, but is expected to start for Ryan at defensive tackle alongside Brown.

“I’d love to be starting,” LeBlanc said. “But if I’m not the best, I don’t want to start.

“I was ecstatic for my dad and my family, and even more excited when I found out I was going to Denton Ryan. I’m excited to be here, and excited for the next two years.”

Few changes on offense

Junior quarterback Spencer Sanders, who has 12 FBS offers, returns with a full arsenal of weapons. That includes a trio of veteran wide receivers in Gabriel Douglas, Tauskie Dove and Jimmy Love.

“I wasn’t always on point like I wanted to be today, but I still gave it everything I had and so did my teammates,” Sanders said. “We want to start fast and continue to do so.”

The question marks offensively are on the offensive line and in the kicking game. Ryan’s offense has seven returning starters, but only two are on the offensive line in seniors Dawson Lahart and Nate Wilson. This is the second straight season the Raiders have gone through an overhaul in the trenches.

Henigan is also looking for a punter and kicker with the graduation of veteran Jesse Delarosa.

“I think that’s huge, huge, huge,” Henigan said of the kicking game. “There’s always things we can improve upon, but all in all it was a good first day.”

Guyer’s Mwaniki set to continue pipeline to Stillwater

Guyer junior defensive back Thabo Mwaniki (1) sacks Byron Nelson senior quarterback Preston Haire (12), Friday, October 23, 2015, at C.H. Collins Athletic Complex in Denton, TX. David Minton/DRC

Guyer junior defensive back Thabo Mwaniki (1) sacks Byron Nelson senior quarterback Preston Haire (12), Friday, October 23, 2015, at C.H. Collins Athletic Complex in Denton, TX. David Minton/DRC

As a middle-schooler at Harpool, Thabo Mwaniki remembers watching from afar as a trio of Guyer football players excelled in the Big 12 at Oklahoma State.

Now that Guyer’s contingent of OSU players has all moved on, Mwaniki will start what he hopes is another pipeline from Guyer High School to Stillwater after committing to play college football for the Cowboys on Saturday.

Mwaniki visited Stillwater on Thursday and made his decision shortly thereafter, choosing OSU over 12 other Football Bowl Subdivision offers including Colorado, Kansas, Purdue and North Texas.

“It just feels like home to me,” said Mwaniki, who will play safety at the next level but will play mostly at strong-side linebacker and wide receiver during his upcoming senior year. “I love the staff. [Safeties] Coach [Dan] Hammerschmidt is great. The facilities are top of the line. The campus is beautiful. Just everything about it was great.”

Oral commitments are non-binding. The first day a Class of 2017 recruit can sign a national letter of intent is Feb. 1.

Mwaniki moved up from junior varsity as a sophomore three games into the year to play safety for Guyer before moving to linebacker due to injury a handful of games into the 2015 season. He finished his junior year with 61 tackles, including 14 stops behind the line of scrimmage. He added two sacks and a fumble recovery. He was also Guyer’s second-leading receiver with 18 catches for 294 yards and a touchdown.

“His versatility speaks volumes,” Guyer coach John Walsh said. “I think that’s what caught the attention of a lot of people. They want him at safety, some want him at corner, but he could be a receiver at that level. He has some of the best ball skills and explosiveness that we’ve had come through. The different things he brings to the table makes him so attractive.”

Mwaniki had planned to commit at the beginning of the summer but was waiting for an offer that blew him away. On Thursday, he got it.

“We’ve been talking for about four weeks now,” Mwaniki said. “The biggest thing for me was that they’re losing five safeties by the time I get there, so early playing time was a big factor for me.”

And once again, Guyer fans seem poised to have a reason to follow OSU on Saturdays.

“I’m excited for Thabo,” said Walsh, whose son J.W. was a Cowboys quarterback who graduated in December. “Plus, I get to keep all that orange stuff in my closet.”

Baseball: Argyle’s King brothers commit to Oklahoma

Argyle's Preston King (15) tips the ball foul against Texarkana-Pleasant Grove, Saturday, June 4, 2016, at Boyd High School in McKinney, Texas. David Minton/DRC

Argyle’s Preston King (15) tips the ball foul against Texarkana-Pleasant Grove, Saturday, June 4, 2016, at Boyd High School in McKinney, Texas. David Minton/DRC

Not many baseball teams can have four freshmen in the starting lineup and still put together the run Argyle High School did this past season when it won 27 games and nearly made a return trip to the Class 4A state tournament.

But not every team had the type of freshmen the Eagles had, and they’re quickly drawing the attention of college scouts.

Three of Argyle’s four soon-to-be-sophomore standouts verbally committed to major Division I programs in July. Second baseman Brenden Dixon committed to the University of Texas on Tuesday, but not before twin brothers Preston and Austin King committed to Oklahoma. The King brothers announced their commitment on July 12.

“I’m not surprised they drew that kind of attention, because that’s the reason they were on the field,” Argyle coach Ricky Griffin said. “It wasn’t always a popular decision [to start freshmen] for some, but hopefully they now realize the potential they all have.”

You can read about Dixon’s commitment here. For the King brothers, choosing the Sooners was a no-brainer. Both standouts were originally approached by OU scouts at a select baseball tournament in Houston and were invited for a visit.

“That’s been our No. 1 school since we were 6 years old,” Preston said. “We took a little time to think about the offer, but we pretty much jumped on it.”

Oral commitments are nonbinding. Dixon and the King brothers wouldn’t be able to sign a national letter of intent until fall 2018.

Preston played shortstop, third base and left field for the Eagles last season while batting .390 with a .515 on-base percentage. Austin was the starting catcher and hit .342 with a .485 on-base percentage to go with seven doubles, a home run and 15 RBIs.

“For us, it’s always been our goal to play at the next level,” Austin said. “[Preston] is my best friend, so we’re always doing stuff together. There’s a lot of competition between us, but we’re excited to be able to keep playing on the same teams.”

STEVE GAMEL can be reached at 940-566-6869 and via Twitter at @NewspaperSteve.

Baseball: Argyle’s soon-to-be sophomore, Brenden Dixon, commits to Texas

Argyle's Brenden Dixon (5) grabs a high-bouncing grounder near second against Texarkana-Pleasant Grove, Saturday, June 4, 2016, at Boyd High School in McKinney, Texas. David Minton/DRC

Argyle’s Brenden Dixon (5) grabs a high-bouncing grounder near second against Texarkana-Pleasant Grove, Saturday, June 4, 2016, at Boyd High School in McKinney, Texas. David Minton/DRC

Argyle High School second baseman Brenden Dixon always has imagined himself playing college baseball, but not once did he picture himself playing for the University of Texas — a program he was used to rooting against.

Apparently, things change.

Dixon, a longtime TCU fan who will be a sophomore this fall, jumped at the chance to commit to the Longhorns Tuesday as he followed up on an offer he thought might not be on the table anymore after the retirement of legendary coach Augie Garrido in May.

“With the new coaching staff, I really didn’t know anymore if they’d still honor it,” said Dixon, who was originally offered by Garrido at a camp in January. “When I found out it still was, I bolted up to Austin today and told the coach I’m ready.

“It’s weird because I never pictured myself in Austin. I always hated burnt orange. But it was Augie. Once I got up here, I kept thinking, wow, this place is unreal.”

Oral commitments are nonbinding. Dixon wouldn’t be able to sign a national letter of intent until fall 2018.

Dixon was as steady as they come in the middle of the infield this past season and also did well at the plate, batting .237 with seven extra-base hits and 15 RBIs. He was one of four freshman to start for the Eagles, who finished 27-6 and fell one round shy of advancing to the program’s third-straight state tournament.

Argyle won the Class 4A state title in 2015.

Dixon also had offers from Oklahoma and Oklahoma State. He said Texas could play him at second base, third, or shortstop.

“This is a huge stress lifted off my shoulders,” Dixon said. “None of this could have been done without the work of all my coaches.”

STEVE GAMEL can be reached at 940-566-6869 and via Twitter at @NewspaperSteve.


Football: Ryan, Argyle top preseason coaches poll

The Ryan Raiders stretch before they take the field against Hebron, Thursday, September 3, 2015, in Denton, TX. David Minton/DRC

The Ryan Raiders stretch before they take the field against Hebron, Thursday, September 3, 2015, in Denton, TX. David Minton/DRC

As has already been reported, the Texas High School Coaches Association preseason poll is officially out. What does that mean for the Denton area? Well, several teams are on there, of course!

Perhaps to no one’s surprise, both Ryan and Argyle landed top spots. The poll is divided by region and classification, so Ryan — fresh off a 13-1 finish in 2015 — is the No. 1 team in Class 5A Region I. Argyle, a state runner-up last season, is No. 1 in Class 4A Division I Region I.

Guyer, Denton, Lake Dallas, Sanger, Krum and Pilot Point are also listed. Guyer is the No. 7 team in Class 6A Region I. Lake Dallas is No. 6 in 5A Region II.

Here is the list (6A-3A), as was reported by The Dallas Morning News.

Class 6A, Region I

No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Cedar Hill (6) 9-2 75
2 Allen (1) 14-1 69
3 Euless Trinity 10-1 53
4 Southlake Carroll 9-3 48
5 DeSoto (1) 6-6 39
6 Arlington Martin 10-3 36
7 Denton Guyer 10-4 33
8 Mansfield 12-3 21
9 San Angelo Central 11-2 14
9 Waco Midway 9-4 14

Others receiving votes: South Grand Prairie 13; Lewisville Marcus 8; Plano East 5; Arlington Lamar 3; Odessa Permian 3; Abilene 2; Belton 2; Duncanville 2.

Class 6A, Region II

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Conroe The Woodlands (3) 10-2 62
2 Spring Westfield (3) 9-3 59
3 Klein Collins 9-2 47
4 Longview (1) 11-3 40
5 Coppell 6-5 29
6 Rockwall 10-4 28
7 Lufkin 7-4 25
8 Round Rock Cedar Ridge 10-2 23
9 Mesquite Horn (1) 6-5 22
10 Dallas Jesuit 10-2 18

Others receiving votes: Spring 13; Garland Rowlett 12; Tyler 12; Dallas Skyline 9; North Mesquite 9; Houston Stratford 8; Round Rock 7; Beaumont West Brook 6; Austin Bowie 4; Pflugerville Hendrickson 4; Klein Oak 3.

Class 6A, Region III

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Katy (8) 16-0 80
2 Galena Park North Shore 13-3 52
3 Pearland 11-1 50
4 Richmond George Ranch 16-0 46
5 Houston Lamar 11-2 37
6 Dickinson 12-2 33
7 Houston Cypress Ranch 10-2 31
8 Fort Bend Ridge Point 11-4 22
9 Humble Atascocita 12-2 19
9 Katy Cinco Ranch 9-2 19

Others receiving votes: Friendswood 9; Fort Bend Hightower 8; Houston Cypress Falls 8; Houston Strake Jesuit 6; Pearland Dawson 5; Houston Cypress Creek 3; League City Clear Springs 3; Houston Cy-Fair 2; La Porte 2; League City Clear Creek 2; Alief Elsik 1; Alief Taylor 1; Houston King 1.

Class 6A, Region IV

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Cibolo Steele (1) 14-1 71
2 Austin Lake Travis (6) 15-1 69
3 Austin Westlake 14-2 57
4 Converse Judson (1) 13-2 53
5 Spring Branch Smithson Valley 10-4 39
6 San Antonio Brennan 9-3 31
7 Schertz Clemens 11-3 21
8 Austin Vandegrift 11-3 19
9 San Antonio Reagan 10-1 17
10 Cedar Park Vista Ridge 12-3 14

Others receiving votes: San Antonio Johnson 11; San Antonio O’Connor 11; McAllen Memorial 7; Laredo United 6; Harlingen 4; Los Fresnos 4; San Antonio Brandeis 4; San Antonio Stevens 2.

Class 5A, Region I

No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Denton Ryan (5) 13-1 77
2 Aledo (3) 13-2 74
3 Amarillo 9-3 53
4 Abilene Cooper 7-6 50
5 Canyon Randall 12-2 41
6 Lubbock-Cooper 9-2 32
7 Colleyville Heritage 5-6 30
8 El Paso Eastlake 11-2 16
9 Canyon 10-3 12
9 Wichita Falls Rider 7-5 12

Others receiving votes: North Richland Hills Birdville 9; North Richland Hills Richland 7; Denton 6; Denison 4; El Paso Chapin 4; Fort Worth Boswell 4; Grapevine 3; Lubbock Monterey 3; Fort Worth South Hills 2; White Settlement Brewer 1.

Class 5A, Region II

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Lancaster (4) 10-4 73
2 Frisco Lone Star (3) 14-2 69
3 Dallas Highland Park (1) 10-2 62
4 Mansfield Lake Ridge 15-1 47
5 Mesquite Poteet 9-4 43
6 Lake Dallas 12-3 30
7 Waxahachie 6-4 28
8 Marshall 11-2 26
9 Wylie East 10-2 21
10 Texarkana Texas 8-3 9

Others receiving votes: Mansfield Summit 6; Longview Pine Tree 5; Mansfield Timberview 5; Frisco Wakeland 4; Hallsville 4; Mansfield Legacy 4; Lucas Lovejoy 2; Dallas South Oak Cliff 1; Everman 1.

Class 5A, Region III

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Cedar Park (5) 16-0 77
2 Manvel (3) 11-3 72
3 Temple 12-2 57
4 Crosby 11-1 53
5 College Station 10-3 27
5 Magnolia 10-2 27
7 College Station A&M Consolidated 9-4 22
8 Fort Bend Elkins 8-3 17
9 Georgetown 8-4 16
10 Port Neches-Groves 9-3 13

Others receiving votes: Bryan 11; Ennis 9; Dayton 7; Magnolia West 7; Texas City 7; Fort Bend Marshall 4; Brenham 3; Elgin 3; Georgetown East View 2; Nederland 2; Port Arthur Memorial 2; New Caney 1; Waco 1.

Class 5A, Region IV

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Corpus Christi Calallen (4) 11-3 75
2 Boerne Champion 9-4 58
3 Kerrville Tivy (1) 11-1 51
4 Victoria West (1) 11-2 47
5 Angleton 8-6 38
6 Richmond Foster (1) 10-3 36
7 Edcouch Edcouch-Elsa 8-5 25
8 Dripping Springs 5-5 20
9 San Antonio Alamo Heights 6-4 17
10 Port Lavaca Calhoun 7-4 14

Others receiving votes: Austin LBJ 11; Austin Travis 10 (1); Gregory-Portland 8; Austin 6; Mercedes 6; Corpus Christi Carroll 5; Victoria East 5; Corpus Christi Flour Bluff 3; Lockhart 3; Roma 2.

Class 4A, Division I, Region I

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Argyle (3) 14-2 39
2 Abilene Wylie (1) 12-3 37
3 Brownwood 11-3 30
4 Andrews 10-2 26
5 Decatur 9-2 23
6 Sanger 10-2 21
7 Stephenville 4-7 15
8 Levelland 7-5 13
9 Pampa 8-4 8
10 Lubbock Estacado 2-8 4

Others receiving votes: Burkburnett 2; Snyder 1; Wichita Falls Hirschi 1.

Class 4A, Division I, Region II

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Texarkana Liberty-Eylau (2) 12-2 38
2 Kennedale (2) 12-1 37
3 Terrell 11-2 32
4 Alvarado 9-3 19
5 Athens 8-4 18
6 Mineral Wells 10-3 17
7 Kaufman 11-2 16
8 Princeton 7-4 13
8 Van 6-5 13
10 Paris 6-5 10

Others receiving votes: Dallas Carter 5; Carrollton Ranchview 2.

Class 4A, Division I, Region III

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Carthage (2) 11-4 38
2 Navasota (1) 12-1 35
3 Silsbee (1) 11-3 32
4 Kilgore 8-4 26
5 Stafford 11-1 20
6 Henderson 7-3 18
7 El Campo 9-4 17
8 Bridge City 7-4 8
9 Center 10-3 7
10 Houston North Forest 10-2 5
10 Sealy 6-6 5

Others receiving votes: Tyler Chapel Hill 4; West Columbia Columbia 3; Huffman Hargrave 2.

Class 4A, Division I, Region IV

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Waco La Vega (3) 16-0 38
2 China Spring 12-2 35
2 Liberty Hill (1) 10-3 35
4 Somerset 10-2 24
5 Gatesville 6-7 22
6 Boerne 7-3 19
7 Burnet 6-5 14
8 La Vernia 7-5 12
9 Rockport-Fulton 7-4 9
10 Taylor 4-7 6

Others receiving votes: Fischer Canyon Lake 4; La Feria 2.

Class 4A, Division II, Region I

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Sweetwater (1) 12-1 36
2 Monahans 7-5 27
3 Krum (1) 8-6 26
4 Graham (1) 5-6 24
5 Brownfield (1) 8-2 21
5 Iowa Park 7-5 21
7 Perryton 7-6 17
8 Midland Greenwood 6-5 13
9 Bridgeport 5-5 10
10 Glen Rose 3-7 6

Others receiving votes: Denver City 5; Vernon 5; Godley 4; Waxahachie Life 3; Bushland 1; Dalhart 1.

Class 4A, Division II, Region II

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Gilmer (2) 14-1 38
2 Celina (2) 15-1 37
3 Atlanta 9-5 33
4 Jasper 7-5 23
5 Pittsburg 10-2 20
6 Gladewater 5-6 14
7 Canton 6-6 11
8 Texarkana Pleasant Grove 6-5 7
9 Caddo Mills 8-3 6
9 Melissa 1-9 6

Others receiving votes: Aubrey 5; Emory Rains 5; Ferris 4; Tatum 4; Dallas Lincoln 3; Diboll 2; Wills Point 2.

Class 4A, Division II, Region III

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Bellville 11-3 35
2 West Orange-Stark (3) 15-1 34
3 La Grange 7-4 28
4 Giddings 12-1 24
5 Fairfield (1) 8-4 23
6 Caldwell 8-5 22
7 Mexia 7-5 17
8 Lorena 9-4 14
9 Robinson 1-9 9
10 Columbus 5-6 3
10 Waco Connally 2-8 3

Others receiving votes: Gonzales 2; Madisonville 2; Orangefield 2; Liberty 1; Shepherd 1.

Class 4A, Division II, Region IV

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Cuero (4) 9-6 40
2 Geronimo Navarro 11-1 34
3 Sinton 12-1 27
3 Wimberley 5-8 27
5 Wharton 8-4 26
6 Devine 10-2 18
7 Orange Grove 10-1 14
8 Port Isabel 6-4 9
9 Sweeny 2-9 7
10 Aransas Pass 8-4 6

Others receiving votes: Pearsall 4; Crystal City 3; Bandera 2; Rio Hondo 2; Llano 1.

Class 3A, Division I, Region I

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Brock (4) 16-0 40
2 Wall 12-1 35
3 Shallowater 10-3 32
4 Muleshoe 10-3 29
5 Brady 7-4 18
6 Clyde 8-3 17
7 Breckenridge 7-5 15
8 Littlefield 6-6 11
9 Amarillo River Road 4-7 4
9 Comanche 5-6 4
9 San Angelo Grape Creek 2-8 4
9 Tuscola Jim Ned 5-6 4

Others receiving votes: Bowie 3; Crane 3; Early 1.

Class 3A, Division I, Region II

No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Mineola (4) 14-1 40
2 Sunnyvale 12-2 35
3 Pottsboro 11-1 30
4 White Oak 10-3 27
5 Pilot Point 7-3 20
6 Callisburg 10-3 16
7 Grandview 12-1 7
7 Hughes Springs 6-5 7
9 Whitesboro 5-7 6
10 Commerce 5-6 5
10 Maypearl 4-7 5

Others receiving votes: Kemp 4; Winnsboro 4; Howe 3; Redwater 3; Van Alstyne 3; Farmersville 2; Scurry-Rosser 2; Gladewater Sabine 1.

Class 3A, Division I, Region III

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Cameron Yoe (3) 14-2 38
2 Franklin (1) 15-1 32
3 Malakoff 10-2 27
4 La Marque 9-3 26
5 Coldspring-Oakhurst 7-5 21
5 Teague 11-2 21
7 Rockdale 9-3 16
8 Kirbyville 10-2 14
9 Hitchcock 11-3 11
10 McGregor 5-6 7

Others receiving votes: Palestine Westwood 3; Elkhart 2; Jarrell 1; Woodville 1.

Class 3A, Division I, Region IV

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Yoakum (1) 6-6 34
2 Hallettsville (1) 9-3 29
3 Mathis (2) 12-3 28
4 Edna 8-4 26
5 Goliad 8-5 25
6 Marion 7-4 19
7 Altair Rice 6-7 14
8 George West 4-7 13
9 Lago Vista 2-8 11
10 Vanderbilt Industrial 2-9 6

Others receiving votes: Van Vleck 4; Jourdanton 3; San Diego 3; Luling 2; Lyford 2; Kingsville Academy 1.

Class 3A, Division II, Region I

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Canadian (1) 16-0 36
2 Cisco (1) 10-2 34
3 Sonora 8-4 28
4 Coleman 11-2 26
5 Idalou (1) 13-1 23
6 Childress (1) 7-4 17
7 Eastland 10-3 16
7 Spearman 9-2 16
9 Tolar 9-5 12
10 Dublin 5-7 4

Others receiving votes: Alpine 3; Amarillo Highland Park 2; Ballinger 2; San Angelo TLC 1.

Class 3A, Division II, Region II

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Hooks (2) 9-2 36
2 Henrietta (1) 12-2 33
3 Gunter 8-4 23
4 Daingerfield 5-7 19
5 Big Sandy Harmony 7-5 16
6 Leonard 7-5 15
6 Omaha Pewitt 8-5 15
6 Ore City (1) 9-2 15
9 Winona 7-4 13
10 Alba-Golden 8-3 7

Others receiving votes: Jacksboro 6; Diana New Diana 5; Sadler S & S Consolidated 5; Pattonville Prairiland 4; Queen City 3; De Kalb 2; Holliday 2; Lone Oak 1.

Class 3A, Division II, Region III

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Newton (3) 8-5 38
2 Crockett 10-4 32
3 Waskom 16-0 27
4 Corrigan-Camden (1) 8-5 23
5 Arp 7-6 22
6 New London West Rusk 12-2 17
7 Dallas Triple A 0-3 12
8 Beckville 11-2 11
9 Marlin 6-6 9
10 Buffalo 4-7 8

Others receiving votes: Elysian Fields 7; Clifton 6; Jewett Leon 4; Garrison 2; Frankston 1; New Waverly 1.

Class 3A, Division II, Region IV

 No. Team 2015 Record Pts
1 Boling (3) 12-2 39
2 Blanco (1) 12-1 35
3 East Bernard 12-3 32
4 Lexington 5-6 24
5 Odem 12-1 23
6 Comfort 5-6 21
7 Schulenburg 5-5 12
8 Rogers 2-8 10
9 Johnson City 8-3 8
10 El Maton Tidehaven 7-5 6
10 Stockdale 5-6 6

Others receiving votes: Hebbronville 2; Dilley 1; Poth 1.



Guyer hoopsters offered by Sooners

Guyer sophomores-to-be De'Vion Harmon, left, and Jalen Wilson each picked up offers from the Oklahoma Sooners over the weekend. David Minton/DRC

Guyer sophomores-to-be De’Vion Harmon, left, and Jalen Wilson each picked up offers from the Oklahoma Sooners over the weekend. David Minton/DRC

In case you’ve been living under a rock, there are some pretty talented cats in the 2019 class at Guyer.

We saw it in two different sports this past school year. There was obviously running back Noah Cain on the gridiron, and he was joined by classmate De’Vion Harmon, who was a starting wide receiver for the Wildcats. The pair were the first freshmen Guyer coach John Walsh ever had suited up to start a season. And they both were integral in Guyer’s run to the regional final.

Then, we saw it on the hardwood with Harmon and fellow freshman Jalen Wilson, as they led Guyer to a 30-win season and a second-round playoff appearance before falling to powerhouse South Grand Prairie, and it was the two freshmen who often led the way.

Over the weekend, they made a splash on the recruiting scene when they picked up offers on the same night from the Oklahoma Sooners. Not bad for a first offer in the bag for Wilson and a second for Harmon after UT-Arlington made the initial one weeks ago. Harmon has also picked up serious interest from LSU.

Harmon, a Jack-of-all-trades point guard, averaged 13.3 points, 4.5 assists and 4.6 rebounds per game last season for the Wildcats. He announced earlier this summer his decision to give up football and focus exclusively on basketball. Wilson, a 6-5 guard/forward, averaged 14.7 points with a team-high 6.7 rebounds and three assists.

To think, the Wildcats have those two for three more seasons plus a crop of more young studs coming in. The move to the new District 6-6A with the big Plano ISD schools and Allen is going to be a really big challenge on the basketball court, but Guyer is shaping up to be able to compete for a district title.


Big-time offers keeping piling up for Cain

A quick look at the above highlight tape (yes, I’m a child of the 80s and I still use the word “tape”), lets you know pretty quickly that Noah Cain doesn’t mess around.

Last season as a freshman — one of two freshman starters on Guyer’s varsity team after John Walsh had gone nine years without ever beginning the season suiting up a freshman much less starting one — Cain burst on to the scene and proved to be one of the hardest runners in the Metroplex.

On Thursday, Cain added another big-time college offer to his list before ever taking a snap as a high school sophomore. It came from Kevin Sumlin and Texas A&M, who joined other Power 5 schools like Arizona, Arizona State, Kansas, Miami and Oklahoma State as ones to jump on the Guyer freshman early.

“It’s a first for me,” Walsh said. “We’ve had these programs offer our kids before but never at 15 years old. It’s a testament to his preparation he’s done prior to this, in his early years. He’s ahead of his time physically. Today, he’s a solid 202 pounds at 15.”

Cain, who’s 5-11, missed the better part of four games last year with a broken hand, but still managed to rack up 1,058 yards on 112 carries (9.4 yards per carry) and 10 touchdowns while adding another score through the air.

At this time last year I remember Walsh telling me about a freshman-to-be who was special, but he thought he might lack the home run threat. He quickly erased that doubt, and showed to be the complete package pretty quickly with a spatial awareness well beyond his years.

“He erased any downfield, home run threat doubts in Week 1 with a long run against Allen,” Walsh said. “What we know and what colleges see on tape is that, other than being physically gifted, he has natural vision and patience to set up blocks. That’s the last thing a good running back usually gets, but he has that already.”