The first week of our 806 High School Sports Connection 2021 two-a-days tour started at midnight on August 2nd at Brownfield High School with Coach Flores and the Cubs and ended on August 8th at noon on the campus of Lubbock Christian High School With Coach Softley. Here is a recap of the great players, practices and other things that stuck out to me before we head to week two of my tour on Monday!
MONDAY, AUGUST 2ND
1. Brownfield Cubs- Midnight Madness
We had a great time in Brownfield, Texas for the Cubs’ Midnight Madness and we discussed his feelings on the 2021 edition of the Cubs and Coach Flores told me that this would be the best team he has had so far in Brownfield. Austin Sisson will be a key player to watch for the Cubs as they will contend for a playoff spot this fall.
2. Slaton Tigers
Coach Johnson is a warrior! We talked about his numbers for his varsity squad this season and they weren’t that high. But, regardless of that, the Tigers will be contenders for a playoff spot in 1-3A DI. Folks, Ayden Ramirez is a sniper at the quarterback position! He will be counted on to take this team to a new level in 2021.
3. Post Antelopes
Post is coming off of back-to-back State title appearances and a 30-2 record the last two seasons combined! I love coming to practice to watch Coach Riker do his thing! One of the best coaches in Texas and along with Coach Pittman, the ‘Lopes will always be competitive; even though they lost 18 starters from those State Championship runner-up teams. Zachary Courtney and Isaiah Crawford are National talents and should have massive seasons for the Bold Gold Nation! Also, be on the lookout for Michael Fairbanks at the QB position for sure!
4. New Home Leopards
New Home‘s program has moved up to 2A recently and they have some good numbers along with a great staff that’s led by Head Football Coach, Jon Ward! Ethan Hollinshead is a big man that will play both sides of the ball! He’s nasty on both side of the ball and will get his backs some open field to run, it’ll be up to them to do the rest!
5. Lamesa Golden Tors
Coach Joseph Hood made the playoffs last season and should secure another spot in the tournament this fall for the Tors. Josiah Zapata will get another featured season at tailback for Lamesa and will get some help with players like Luke Martinez in the mix as well. Excited to see how the Golden Tors do this season!
TUESDAY AUGUST 3rd:
6. Friona Chieftains
Coach Jimmy Arias knows he is in the toughest district in the state in 3A, but he and his squad are ready for the challenge! Jacob Bautista should have a breakout season in his Senior Campaign for the Chiefs and look for other key players to step up as well!
7. Muleshoe Mules
Muleshoe is under their second year of coaching from Jason Richards and you can see the difference from year one, to year two! Their district will be tough, but the Mules can get a playoff spot and compete for a top-two seed with the talent they have coming back this fall. Speaking of talent, Zach Hasley is a dangerous quarterback and will have a great Senior season along with linebacker Brennen Davis; who is garnering a lot of interest from FCS-level schools. He should be: He’s good!!
#8 Sudan Hornets
Sudan will count on a plethora of underclassmen this season to catch up to speed pretty quickly for their team to continue their great success! Coach Cornelius will have the Hornets buzzing and they will most-assuredly be playing in the postseason!
9. Littlefield Wildcats
The Wildcats had the music blaring and were throwing the ball all over the field when I was at practice on Tuesday. Wait a minute, did I say music blaring and throwing the ball? Yes. Yes I did! Coach Jimmy Thomas is ushering in a new era for the Wildcats, who will change offenses for the first time in… 50 years! Tyjae Chambers will be a force behind that big Littlefield offensive line, but they will be slinging the pill this fall too!
10. Levelland Lobos
Coach Lyle Leong Jr. comes in from San Antonio and takes over the Lobos for his first head coaching position! It’s all about the culture and paying attention to detail for Levelland this season and the tide is changing for the Lobos. I was impressed by his staff and the way they took charge of their specific duties!
WEDNESDAY: AUGUST 4th
11. Seagraves Eagles
The Eagles of Seagraves will be doing a lot of grounding and pounding this fall! I saw at least five tailbacks that can hit the hole with force and their lineman are all pretty stout and quick up front as well. Expect the Eagles to have a great season in 2021!
12. Seminole Indians
Seminole will be a team that should have a good year under Coach Greg Poynor who comes over from Pampa to take over the Indians football team. The Indians have some DUDES out there on the field including Rikter Connally; who is 6’5” 275 and will get a ton of DI looks at defensive end this fall! Can Seminole get in the playoffs this year? I do believe so!
13. Denver City Mustangs
Denver City is a consistent playoff team every year under Coach Fontenot and they will be in the postseason this year again! Now, my question is.. Who wins the quarterback job for the Mustangs? There are three quarterbacks in play and all three could win the job and do well with their weapons and line they will inherit! They’ll take on Abernathy for a scrimmage Friday that should be fun to see!
#14. Coronado Mustangs
“Nobody gives a damn how tired you are.” That’s what Coach DJ Mann, who is taking his first head coaching position at his alma mater at Coronado, said to his team after a weight lifting session on Wednesday after it was over. The Mustangs had one of their best seasons in history in 2020, going 12-1 and having quarterback and Mississippi State Commit Sawyer Robertson named the Texas High School Football Gatorade player of the year! Jett Carroll steps in to take over at the QB1 position for the Mustangs and will have some threats all over the field to work with. Depth will be an issue early, but Coronado won’t take too much of a step back, if they take one at all.
THURSDAY AUG 4th
#15 Crosbyton Chiefs
Crosbyton’s Chiefs have some new juice with their new coaches on their staff this season. Those players will be conditioned, disciplined, and relentless in their attack this fall! 24 players this year for their team isn’t too bad and I expect the Chiefs to improve vastly this season. Let’s go, Chiefs!
16. Ralls Jackrabbits
I gotta commend Ralls’ Jackrabbits for their schedule! I mean, look here.. Farwell and Clarendon to open the season? Whoah! Their offense is controlled chaos to me because they run their plays so fast! A plethora of weapons and a great coach; two ingredients for a great run again in 2A DII for the JackRabbits! They looked very sharp when I went to visit, as usual!
#17 Monterey Plainsmen
Monterey isn’t very deep this season, depth-wise, but the players that will trot out for their season opener are going to light some people up this fall. I was impressed with the combination of Blake Porter at quarterback and Deonte Vaughn at the receiver position. It looked liked they have been working all summer on their chemistry because it showed at their practice Thursday! Jaden Hilliard and Marquise White were solid in Their linebacker drills and the line has some big boys! How long will it take for their team to gel? What changes and schemes will change this year under Coach Hutchinson? Can’t wait to find out on August 26th!
FRIDAY AUG 5th
#18 Abernathy Antelopes
One thing I noticed quickly when I checked out the Antelopes practice Friday was just how good Jess Hoel and Anthony White looked! Both we’re flying around and you could see the progression in both of their games as they gear up for huge seasons under Coach Wiley for his second season at the helm after taking over for Coach Daily in 2020. Cole Vandygriff looked exceptional up front and I really think he has an All-State season waiting for him this year if he wants it!
#19 Estacado Matadors
One word for Estacado: LOADED!
We are ready for the Matadors to take that next step and go at least four rounds deep in the 4A DII playoffs this season; to be completely honest, there is no excuse as even Coach Cluley said himself that this is the most talented team that he has had in his six years of being in the program! Haskin, Butler, Lateef, Tristen, Ross, Sims, Hawkins, Williams, Thomas.. Just a few names to keep your eye out for. Lookout!
SATURDAY: AUGUST 6th
#20 Tulia Hornets
Tulia had a lot of players out with injuries last season and just having those players back, like Travon McCaslin at quarterback, will automatically make this team better this fall! How much better is the question. Their district is tough and it figures to have three of their four playoff berths already locked in with Canadian, Childress and Spearman going to the postseason so that last spot will be between Dimmitt, Highland Park, Tulia and Friona. Let the games begin!
#21 Trinity Christian Lions
Coach Spiller thinks the Lions can win a title this year in TAPPS! Now, I haven’t got to look at a lot of their opponents but this Lions team is really explosive and touts a dangerous Division One prospect in Marcus Ramon-Edwards who is 6’4” 200 and very fast! He can also play a little round ball too! Can Kade lead this team at the QB1 position to new heights this fall? He’ll have plenty of time to do it with players like Hunter Mastin protecting him up front; he looked solid at practice yesterday! Can’t wait to see how their season turns out!
#22 Lubbock-Christian Eagles
Coach Softley, surprise surprise, has another great team this fall! The Eagles have made deep runs the last few years in TAPPS play and will make another one this season. These guys are legit title contenders and with leaders like Connor Lack, Karson Leatherwood, Bax Townsend and their great offense and defensive lines leading the way, don’t be surprised if the Eagles are flying in December and still playing playoff football!
STAY TUNED FOR WEEK TWO OF MY TWO-A-DAYS COVERAGE COMING STARTING TOMORROW!
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