Plano East coach Joey McCullough spills it about Guyer

Plano East Head Coach Joey McCullough yells during the second half against Allen at Eagle Stadium on Friday, Nov. 6, 2015, in Allen, Texas. The Eagles won 58-23. (Jae S. Lee/The Dallas Morning News)

Plano East Head Coach Joey McCullough yells during the second half against Allen at Eagle Stadium on Friday, Nov. 6, 2015, in Allen, Texas. The Eagles won 58-23. (Jae S. Lee/The Dallas Morning News)

Little bit of what we call a “notebook dump” here, but here’s some things Plano East head coach Joey McCullough had to say about Guyer heading into tonight’s pivotal District 6-6A showdown.

On facing Guyer Friday:
“It’s going to be a 15-round fight. It’s going to come down to who has the more balanced attack — they’ve got the top-ranked rushing attack in the area, so we know the challenge. For us, it’s about ball security, cutting down on the penalties and staying ahead of the chains on first down.”
On the likelihood of a physical matchup:
“I want my kids to walk a fine line. You want them to play physical on defense and keep gap-integrity. We did that last week [against Wylie] and I thought our defense was outstanding.”
On middle linebacker Anthony Hines’ (90 FBS offers) recent play:
“We didn’t ask him to do too much last week, and he had 23 tackles and two interceptions. He’s a good football player. But our whole defense has been playing great lately. We’ve had three weeks of some of the best practice I’ve seen since I’ve been here. When the bell rings tomorrow, it’s game time.”

What you need to know: Plano East

Plano East quarterback Miklo Smalls (1) makes his way to the goal line for a touchdown during the second quarter of their game against Jesuit on Friday, September 2, 2016 at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas.   (Ashley Landis/The Dallas Morning News)

Plano East quarterback Miklo Smalls (1) makes his way to the goal line for a touchdown during the second quarter of their game against Jesuit on Friday, September 2, 2016 at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas.
(Ashley Landis/The Dallas Morning News)

This has been a pretty eventful week for Guyer football, and not for the best of reasons. But that fallout from Guyer’s district-opening win over Plano is over now, and it’s time for a really, really big game even though it’s just September.

Guyer faces Plano East in what many view as the game for second place in 6-6A behind the state’s No. 1 team Allen, and it also could very well be a game to determine seeding in the Division II playoff bracket from 6-6A as Plano East would be a Division II playoff rep along with Guyer if Plano makes the playoffs, which seems like a pretty solid likelihood at this point.

Remember, top seeds get to host a first-round playoff game, and traveling to either Southlake Carroll or Flower Mound Marcus for a first-round game could be a hornet’s nest.

So, let’s get into the game…

The Game: Plano East (2-2, 1-0) vs. Guyer (3-1, 1-0), Friday, 7:30 p.m., at Denton’s C.H. Collins Athletic Complex

Series Record: This is the first-ever meeting between the schools.

What happened last week: Plano East got up big on the smallest school in the district in Wylie before a ferocious Wylie rally fell short and the Panthers still scored a comfortable win.

Guyer dominated the flow of the game against Plano, but some miscues in the penalty department and on special teams helped keep Plano in the game before Guyer eventually pulled away for a 10-point win behind its vaunted rushing attack and 317 yards between its two starting tailbacks.

What to expect: This is going to be a fun game between two teams with a lot of talent on the field. Guyer coach John Walsh likes to talk about what a team looks like “coming off the bus” and he insists the Panthers will look as good as any team out there, specifically their two stud defenders in 6-3, 230-pound middle linebacker Anthony Hines III and 6-3, 300-pound defensive tackle Deiontae Watts. It has the potential to be a track meet.

Final say: Guyer’s rushing attack won’t be able to win this game by itself, and I think Guyer will have to show some more proficiency in the passing game with Hines roaming the second level of defense and Watts clogging up the middle. But make no mistake, the Guyer running game will still have its big moments and it’s still the best aspect of either one of these teams. In the end, that’ll be enough to help Guyer improve to 2-0 in 6-6A play and almost certainly lock up the top seed in the Division II playoff bracket.

Score prediction: Guyer 41, Plano East 28

Q&A time! Plano East Panthers edition

Plano East linebacker Anthony Hines III (19) celebrates after East recovered a fumble during the second quarter of their game against Jesuit on Friday, September 2, 2016 at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas.   (Ashley Landis/The Dallas Morning News)

Plano East linebacker Anthony Hines III (19) celebrates after East recovered a fumble during the second quarter of their game against Jesuit on Friday, September 2, 2016 at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas.
(Ashley Landis/The Dallas Morning News)

Since most of the teams in the new District 6-6A are new to Guyer, Guyer fans and myself, I’ve decided to try something new this year.

Star Local Media, has covered pretty much all of these teams with the exception of Guyer and Wylie for years, so we’re going to do a Q&A each week about Guyer’s upcoming game.

This week, of course, it’s Guyer and Plano East in the teams’ first meeting in history.

Without further delay, here’s the “conversation” Tim Glaze, who covers East for Star Local Media, and I had over good ol’ electronic mail, along with a score prediction from each of us.

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One quarter, 63 points: More points that 33 other games

Guyer senior linebacker Terence Belton (24) made the interception that secured Guyer's win over Tyler John Tyler

Now if you’re reading that headline and thinking that it’s completely ridiculous, you’re right. It’s completely ridiculous. It’s also true.

The fourth quarter of the Class 4A Division I state semifinal between Guyer and Tyler John Tyler produced 63 points and one of the most dramatic endings you could have wanted to watch.

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