- Thoughts after a crazy Week Zero
Monday, August 29th, 2011
Well, we’ve got one week in the book, and what a crazy week it was. A comeback for the ages, a game-saving tackle, a lot of statement wins and some offenses that really struggled.
So here are my quick thoughts on the week that was:
* Nick pretty much summed it up best in his Sunday column, but what a comeback by Rider on Friday night. Down four TDs in the second half — that’s incredible. I expected good things from the Raiders this year, but this definitely sets the bar even higher.
* The two other games I expected to be intriguing (WFHS-Burkburnett and Holliday-Windthorst) were. Both were pretty exciting. Graham-Mineral Wells sounded like a very good game as well. I always like when good matchups live up to the hype.
* I feel somewhat comfortable saying if Joe Hoegger starts at quarterback, then Windthorst probably beats Holliday. But I feel 100 percent comfortable in saying if the Trojans had their starting QB and Holliday did not, the Trojans would have won by more than seven points. Jacob Cole played a great game.
* I know offenses in general can start out sluggish. But there were a few that really struggled to move the ball: Iowa Park, Henrietta and Vernon were shut out. Petrolia and Quanah only scored one TD, although it looked like the Indians racked up a bunch of yards. They didn’t have many turnovers, so I’m guessing a few lengthy drives stalled.
* After watching Hirschi fumble 11 times (losing five of them) in a 52-point loss to Sanger, I’m going to try to look at the bright side for the Huskies: 1) Sanger might be the best team they play all year; 2) They probably won’t face a Div. I QB again; 3) They can’t fumble any more than they did vs. the Indians; 4) There’s nowhere to go but up and 5) They get the perfect bounceback opponent Friday in 2A Ponder.
* I know it’s a loss, but Nocona looked like it played well against Whitewright in the second half after spotting them a couple TDs. Tate Fenoglio had a huge game, too. I think this bodes well for the Indians in the future.
* Really good wins for Rider, Burkburnett, Graham, Holliday, City View, Seymour, Archer City and Electra.
* Tough losses for WFHS, Jacksboro, Iowa Park, Henrietta, Olney and Quanah.
* If I had to pick the three biggest surprises (excluding the Rider comeback) from last Friday, I’d say: Pampa beating IP at home by 20 (think the Hawks miss Lee Clubb?); Quanah losing 25-6 to a Memphis program that has been down the past few years (but maybe is better this year) and Munday’s blowout loss to Stamford for the second straight year. Pretty incredible how they scored three or four TDs of at least 80 yards.Share
- AreaFootballFan wins first week of “Sack Zach”
Monday, August 29th, 2011
AreaFootballFan, who is the reigning “Sack Zach” winner from a year ago, started off on the right foot in Week Zero by getting 14 of 18 games correct.
Only one pick behind him was One-Legged Fade 41 with 13. I had a tough week (I think I’m last in the newspaper periscope) and only got 10 right. That puts me in a four-way tie for fourth place, but luckily there’s a lot of football picks still to be made.
We’re not giving away prizes this year (corporate legal frowned on that), but keep playing this upcoming week to see how many others can “Sack Zach.”Share
- Carter: “(Very) Hot, Very Hot”
Monday, August 29th, 2011
“(Very) Hot, Very Hot”
“Very hot, very hot” is the line that Anthony Michael-Hall’s geek character in “16 Candles” uses to his quest for Samantha Baker (Molly Ringwald). In a very ironic sense, it’s a positive way of thinking that hot can be good. The movie was set in Illinois or Ohio, of course, and not in Texas during the summer.
There’s also plenty of not so very good ways of thinking about hot, and that was something I experienced this Saturday at the Hotter’N Hell Hundred Finish Line Village. The bands played well, and the crowd enjoyed them, but the heat was palpable.
I’m going somewhere with this, so keep reading, please.
Johnny Cooper , Jay Hollis and the guys from the Killdares were looking just parched.
When the bagpipes player from the Killdares went to the back of the stage and asked for ice, I went to an ice chest and opened it and got him a cup. He immediately opened up his bagpipes and poured the ice into a bag. It turns out that it was so hot outside that he was having problems having his bagpipes work.
That’s (very) hot, very hot.
Needless to say, it was all fun and I wished that it might have been 10 degrees cooler. That didn’t stop the nice couple from getting married though at 4:30 p.m. and I suspect that I should just learn to toughen up. Other people were handling it just fine.
Only later that night did I hear that the Lazy Dog place downtown was starting a live show at 5:30 p.m. featuring area bands like the Minor Prophets. I am not sure how many people came, but if the performances were inside that would have helped. The good thing lately for the P2 is that they have a mister for their outside shows, and that’s a pretty awesome (and very Dallas and Austin) idea.
A note that does not completely relate to live music, but it’s still about music. I was at Fat Alberts the other night interviewing the members from Mr. Fairchild for a story in next Friday’s NEXT, and I started hearing some absolutely amazing songs on the jukebox. It turns out that they have Internet jukebox, which is pretty awesome if the people at the joint paying the dollars have taste. Luckily, the crowd had some taste and that included the guys from Fairchild and the members of Dr. Philgood and the Let’s Get It On’s. I hear the Office also has an Internet jukebox and who knows who else locally is that blessed.
I also had a blast on Wednesday when I went to see The Sweetness at the Iron Horse Pub. The quartet, from Austin and from Canada, played a smart mix of “modern” folk (anti-folk) on acoustic instruments with some sweet vocals and harmonies and some nice simple musical arrangements. Two girls played a variety of strung acoustic guitars, and one played standup bass. Doug (from Wichita Falls) played percussion on a box, a cymbal and some handheld instruments.
The Pub crowd was enthusiastic—especially for a Wednesday night—and the band members enjoyed themselves, and the bassist said they wanted to return. The good thing is that when I spoke to co-owner Danny Ahern, he said that the club also wanted the band to return. I like the notion that we can bring—as well as support–different and good live music in town.Share
- Thoughts from TRN Kickoff Classic
Friday, August 26th, 2011
* First off, what a game. I bet I may not cover one as good as that all year. Two teams that hit hard, played every down like it was their last and kept coming up with big plays. Just when you thought Holliday had the game in hand, Windthorst answered. Expect both of these teams to be playing in mid-December.
* There were three interceptions, but it was pretty clean (only two fumbles, neither which were lost) for an opener. I think there were six total penalties, although another four or so were declined.
* The Trojans’ offensive line did a pretty impressive job. And so did fullback Braydon Ingram, who is new to the starting lineup and added some punch up the middle. Holliday’s Jacob Cole looked dynamite on offense, as well.
* I was a little surprised with how the Trojans were able to move the ball in the second half, but they made the right adjustments. Losing D.J. Boyd hurt the Eagles’ run defense, but Windthorst was still impressive.
* Windthorst would have gone for the two-point conversion if they would have scored at the end. I like the call, even though it never happened.
* Kellen Green threw some nice passes and probably would have had about 30 rushing yards if sacks weren’t counted in his total (he finished with 5 yards). Never seemed to look like he got on the same page with 6-7 Dylan Stallcup. It probably kept Windthorst out of the end zone in the first half.
* It wouldn’t surprise me if Windthorst ran the table, especially when Joe Hoegger gets healthy. And while it will be harder for Holliday to do so, I can bet you they are better than last year’s 2-3 mark heading into district.
* On another front, Munday’s Dee Paul left Thursday’s 47-13 loss to Stamford with a concussion. While that’s unfortunate, when I’d heard he was injured, I thought it might be season-ending. Don’t know why, but I did. Glad it’s not.
* Munday did lose lineman Jorge Rangel for the year with a torn ACL. Can’t imagine a worse opener for the Moguls. A couple injuries, lots of turnovers and a few huge plays by Stamford. The Bulldogs have now won this game twice in a blowout.Share
- Week Zero predictions
Thursday, August 25th, 2011
Next week we’ll start looking at every area game, but this week we’re going to keep it short and sweet. Besides, this is always when it’s difficult to predict a whole lot anyway.
So here are the best games involving area games, beginning tonight with the Kickoff Classic:
* Holliday at Windthorst — If Trojans QB Joe Hoegger was healthy, maybe I’d feel differently. But it’s going to be tough for the Trojans to move the ball against Holliday’s defense. The Eagles have more depth (which matters now since kickoff will be 100 degrees) and I can see them barely winning a low-scoring game.
* Munday vs. Stamford — This is Abilene’s big area game on Thursday night. Stamford easily crushed the Moguls a year ago, but Munday is more experienced now. Plus, who wants to bet against the Moguls at Shotwell? I’ve seen them edge a very good Roscoe team in a shootout during Munday’s 2007 state title run, and I’ve seen Kenyin Thompson scored from midfield on the game’s final play in the postseason to win the game. So Munday is the pick.
* WFHS at Burkburnett — Another high-scoring game? Wouldn’t surprise me. We’ll see if the Coyotes can make stops on defense against a Div. I player in Devin Chafin. I think the Coyotes may force enough turnovers to hold on, but this one is a coin-flip for sure. Should be less than the 94 points the teams game up in the 2010 meeting, though.
* Abilene Cooper at Rider — I expect Rider’s defense to keep it in enough games until the offense, led by J.T. Barrett, finds its footing. But any time you play a big 5A school like Cooper, you’re the underdog. That’s what I feel about this one, although Rider will hang tough in the loss.
* Graham at Mineral Wells — Looking forward to seeing how this one plays out. Both won their districts last year, both are favored to repeat in 2011. Both have pretty solid QBs, but I give a small edge to Graham’s defense. Steers win a close one.Share
- 3-2A, Class A predictions
Wednesday, August 24th, 2011
Another quick round of district predictions for the upcoming season:
3-2A Div. II
1. Holliday; 2. Henrietta; 3. Nocona; 4. Alvord; 5. City View; 6. Jacksboro
Thoughts: Holliday is a pretty good choice for defending its district title, at least for right now. I think Henrietta is a cut above the other four, but we’ll have to wait and see — the loss of LB Tyler Coleman (knee) is a big one. They were expecting great things from him. I could see 3-6 all being toss-ups, but I hear good things from other coaches about Nocona. Alvord lost a lot on defense but is real young. Was kinda disappointed on City View’s collapse last year so we’ll see if the Mustangs can rebound. Half of the six coaches are new, too.
4-A Div. I
1. Stamford; 2. Albany; 3. Seymour; 4. Olney; 5. Haskell
Thoughts: Lots of teams lost a bunch to graduation. Albany’s top three tacklers are back, but most of their skill guys are gone. Stamford’s Hutchinson-Ramos combo is one of the best QB/WR tandems in the state. That’s why I give the Bulldogs a slight edge. Seymour has been holding its own against a couple area 2A teams in scrimmages, so I think that bodes well. The Panthers have a lot of weapons in the passing game. We’ll see if Olney can make a push, and Haskell does have the most guys returning, for what that’s worth.
8-A Div. II
1. Windthorst; 2. Munday; 3. Archer City; 4. Electra; 5. Perrin-Whitt
Thoughts: Windthorst and Munday are probably the two best teams in the area. If they stay healthy and aren’t playing in the state quarterfinals, I’d be surprised. Gotta give the edge to the Trojans just based on their two huge margins of victory a year ago. Hopefully QB Joe Hoegger is healthy and playing soon. I’m interested to see how Archer City does in Castles’ first year and without QB Marty Jentsch. I still like the Wildcats’ chances of getting third. If Coach Ivy can get the Tigers to the playoffs, then it’d be one heck of a turnaround.Share
- Link to Lee Clubb story
Wednesday, August 24th, 2011
Everybody on this website should know who Iowa Park grad Lee Clubb is. Now people who read the Denver Post do too.
Check out the link below, which goes to a Denver Post story that recently ran. It’s a lot like the feature Nick Gholson wrote on him last year, except it ties in his chances of playing at Colorado State this season. Too early to tell, but it sounds like he’ll see the field at least some.
Good kid, and we’ll defintiely have to keep tabs on him this football season.Share
- 4-4A, 6-3A predictions
Wednesday, August 24th, 2011
I’ve been slacking on my prediction-making thus far, so I’m going to briefly go over how I think our area districts will play out in a couple blogs.
This is how I picked in our preview section, which comes out Thursday. It’s pretty dang comprehensive — go pick it up at the store. Anyway, here we go:
1. Denton Ryan; 2. Rider; 3. Lake Dallas; 4. Little Elm; 5. WFHS; 6. The Colony; 7. Denton
Thoughts: Ryan is the cream of the crop — with their defensive studs, there will be a gap between them and other 4-4A schools. I like Rider (and its defense) for second, but could see Lake Dallas swapping places with the local Raiders. The fourth spot is up for grabs. If not for a late collapse against Denton, Little Elm would have been there last year. Maybe this is too high for WFHS, but they have the offensive tools to make it happen. We’ll see about the defense. The Colony has a good QB-WR tandem, and Denton has lots of guys back after taking a surprising fourth place a year ago.
1. Graham; 2. Burkburnett; 3. Iowa Park; 4. Vernon; 5. Hirschi; 6. Bowie.
Thoughts: The Steers are the clear-cut district leader right now at least with Layne Bynum at QB and some key defensive returners. I think Burkburnett’s Devin Chafin could have a big year, too. IP will be pretty good on defense, but we’ll see how potent the Hawks are on offense. Vernon is my sleeper — I could be way off on them, but surely the Lions will be better in 2011. I’m anxious to see how Hirschi looks against Sanger, and I’m not going to write off Bowie yet either, not after last year.Share
- ‘Sack Zach’ is back, new football preview date, etc.
Monday, August 22nd, 2011
Coming to you with a lot of promotional TRN football info today. First, good news. “Sack Zach” is back with a change.
Basically, we’ll pick all the games every week just like we have been doing, but now the winner gets nothing except the satisfaction of winning. So no T-shirt. Apparently, giving away things worried the corporate legal folks.
So look for the schedule to be put up in the next day or so.
Also, I’ve just been told that the football preview section is getting pushed back a day to Thursday. I think there were some team picture problems or something like that. So if you’re not a subscriber and want the tab — don’t buy Wednesday’s paper. Go get Thursdays.
And last but not least, check out the two podcasts I had with KFDX’s Orlando Sanchez. One was on his first season of covering high school football in the area. The one out today talks about this 2011 season.Share
- Carter: “Staying the Course”
Sunday, August 21st, 2011
“Staying the course”
I was hanging out with a few musicians the other day in about 103 degree weather waiting for Fall or at least some cooler weather, and one of them commented that people were starting to recognize him and associate him with his band. The reason, I told him, was that it comes down to playing with the same band, playing lots of venues and getting out and chatting with people before and after the shows.
What happens to too many people who play music is they keep looking for the right band and they never allow the band the time to gell—to come together musically, and that’s something really that makes them better.
It’s pretty rare that people from smaller cities like Wichita Falls will make it famous musically directly from this town. But that doesn’t mean that people from this town can’t become famous. They just need to get to that point musically, or whatever art form they operate in, where they can play and play and play and spend enough time on the road to get noticed. That, or they can relocate to Denton, Dallas or Austin or Los Angeles and play and play and play.
The band from Denton, the Virgin Wolves, that I just wrote about recently just completed their national tourswing and it went well. Whether it’s an uphill climb or a sheer two-mile up a solid sheet of ice, it’s never easy going up the food chain, but taking the chance on a tour, making sure they were properly funded and booking into places where they know people, Facebooking the tour and group to death the entire time, can do a band real good.
From what I understand the guys from Dr. Philgood and the Let’s Get It On’s are going into the studio (Crystal Clear in Dallas) one last time to finish up their recent recording and we should hear something by the end of October or so. The members say that it certainly sounds a little different from their previous work, so I am looking forward to that. The area band will be playing Friday, Sept. 9 at the Spot and some other shows in the area should start showing up.
This summer was such that there weren’t too many outdoor shows. The Hotter’N Hell Finish Line Village will be hosting Jay Hollis on Saturday Aug 27 free outdoors along with Johnny Cooper who is presently promoting his new two CD live at the Iron Horse Pub, and his band will then be followed by the Killdares. The show starts around 11 a.m. and will be over with by 6 p.m. or so. It’s free and all-ages, and it should be a lot of fun. Parking will be no fun, but the festivities are worth it and it’s a good day for Wichita Falls.
There will be a feature story next Friday in the NEXT about Cooper from an interview I did with him about a week or so ago.
I am also pretty exited about The Sweetness show that is coming to the Pub next Wednesday. The band features four singer songwriters who do great four-part harmonies and play acoustic instruments but are not a folk band. In that New York sort of genre, they are what people call anti-folk. The members of The Sweetness are all extremely talented, and this may be one of the better live shows that comes through town in a good long while. The show seems eminently safe to me for people who are open to new and interesting music with craft to it. Probably the only reason we are getting this show is because Douglas Boyd is in the band, so go with it while we have it.
I am chatting with the new head of music department at MSU this week for a story, and that promises to be fun.Share
- Best game every week
Thursday, August 18th, 2011
It’s almost one week away until the 2011 high school football season kicks off. I’ve been doing a lot of compiling schedules and got to thinking: If I had to choose one game to attend every week, what would they be?
So I’ve mapped it out and listed some other interesting matchups for every week. And as the season goes along, some of the last few games I may be way off on. Just kind of depends who winds up playing well and who doesn’t. Here we go:
Week Zero: Holliday at Windthorst — Two of the area’s best teams square off with several key players from last year’s deep playoff runs. I wish QB Joe Hoegger was playing, but it still should be a great game. Honorable mentions: Graham at Mineral Wells; Munday vs. Stamford; WFHS at Burkburnett; Abilene Cooper at Rider.
Week One: Brownwood at Graham — While McCoy-Shipley got plenty of headlines two years ago, Coach Davidson at Graham also played football with those guys at ACU. The Lions won’t be as strong as last year, but this should be a very competitive game. Honorable mentions: Breckenridge at Holliday; Bridgeport at Burkburnett; Hamlin at Graham.
Week Two: Holliday at Iowa Park — Two really solid programs facing off. A real good test for the Eagles, who played the Hawks tough a year ago. Honorable mentions: Abilene Wylie at Graham; Boyd at Henrietta; Archer City at Nocona.
Week Three: Windthorst at Seymour — Not one game just jumps out at me this week, but if the Panthers get off to a strong start, it could be important like it was last year. Plus, Seymour has a home winning streak on the line (if it beats Jacksboro in Week Zero). Honorable mentions: Holliday at Stamford; Henrietta at Archer City; Argyle at Burkburnett.
Week Four: WFHS at The Colony — Hard to say a district opener is a must-win, but for the Coyotes it really is since TC is one of the teams competing with them for one of the last 4-4A playoff spots. Two really good QBs in this one, too. Honorable mentions: Mineral Wells at Burkburnett; Decatur at Iowa Park; Archer City at Olney.
Week Five: Rider at Lake Dallas — The Raiders’ first big district game. A lot of people think the Falcons are the third best team in 4-4A, but the gap between them and Rider is smaller than the Ryan-Rider gap for first. Honorable mentions: Hirschi at Holliday; Bridgeport at Graham; Windthorst at Henrietta; Quanah at Munday.
Week Six: Denton Ryan at Rider — I know I’m going with the Raiders two weeks in a row, but this one is going to be on FSN on Thursday. If we’re going Friday only, I’d say Iowa Park at Hirschi looks pretty important. And it was real close last year. Honorable mentions: Burkburnett at Vernon; Henrietta at Jacksboro; City View at Alvord.
Week Seven: Iowa Park at Graham — Maybe for the 6-3A title, maybe not. But it’s almost always really competitive when these guys duke it out. This is a week full of really good games, too. A lot on here to see. Honorable mentions: Henrietta at Holliday; Windthorst at Archer City; Stamford at Seymour; Hirschi at Burkburnett.
Week Eight: Burkburnett at Iowa Park — Just like the one before it, another crucial 6-3A matchup. Last year saw the Bulldogs jump out to a big lead early, only for IP to score right before the half and then rally at the end. Honorable mentions: Seymour at Olney; Lake Dallas at WFHS; Clarendon at Quanah; Holliday at Alvord.
Week Nine: Windthorst at Munday — If both teams can get past very difficult first-week openers, than it’s realistic to think we could have a pair of 8-0 schools duking it out for the 8-A Div. II title. Hope it’s closer than in 2010. Honorable mentions: Burkburnett at Graham; Henrietta at Nocona; Albany at Seymour; Throckmorton at Knox City; Crowell at Paducah.
Week 10: Rider at WFHS — Hard to argue with the only game these days that fills up Memorial Stadium. It’ll be a packed house, and if the Coyotes can play a little defense this year, then it’s possible some playoff implications are on the line. Honorable mentions: Bowie at Burkburnett; Vernon at Iowa Park; Alvord at Henrietta; Munday at Archer City.Share
- Can Rangers push Angels over the cliff?
Wednesday, August 17th, 2011
The Texas Rangers have done what they were supposed to lately, winning a series in Oakland to build a four-game lead and then pushing the AL advantage to six with wins over the Angels the past two nights.
I think they’re winning this division even if they lose the next two games. I just think their team is a little deeper, a little better.
But they could really put the Angels out of their misery with two more wins.
Ervin Santana hasn’t lost since June. He’s 6-0 since his last loss and has been one of the best pitchers in the league.
Jared Weaver goes Thursday. He’s been one of the best in the league all year, although he’s a distant second or third behind Justin Verlander of the Tigers in the Cy Young race.
But the Rangers have their own ace, C.J. Wilson, going tonight against Santana. We don’t get a rematch of the 1-0 Weaver over Wilson game from the last time these teams met, but this should be good.
My hunch is that the Angels find a way to win tonight. Their backs are against the proverbial wall.
But wouldn’t it be fun if instead the Rangers pushed the Angels off the proverbial cliff?Share
- The word from other scrimmages
Tuesday, August 16th, 2011
On one hand, it’s pretty easy not to read a whole lot into scrimmages. But on the other hand, there’s always a couple at this time of year that sheds some light on what’s to come.
Two examples: In Bowie’s first year at 2A, the Jackrabbits crushed Iowa Park something like 5-1. It was a real eye-opener, whatever the score was. Bowie went on to have a pretty good year in 2A, and I think IP only one a game or two.
The other example — last year when Windthorst beat Nocona pretty bad. The Trojans, who are one classification smaller, played for a state title. Nocona went 1-9. So just remember
Just a few quick tidbits on some things I heard over the weekend about other scrimmages:
* Nocona hung with Windthorst pretty well, from what I was told. In fact, the Indians scored once with the first team and didn’t give up a TD. With QB Joe Hoegger out, it may take Windthorst a little time to get itss footing. But this is a real good sign for the Indians.
* Heard Holliday’s defense didn’t give up much against Archer City. That’s not a surprise considering the Eagles have the area’s most veteran unit and the Wildcats are breaking in both a new offense and new QB.
* Coach Sims told me Quanah’s defense looked pretty good but the offense needs some work. Also not a surprise considering the Indians are replacing a ton of skill kids.
* Heard Munday scored at will against Anson. That offense will be fun to watch this year.
* Andy was out watching Hirschi on Saturday, and he thought the Huskies did OK against the Rams in the second set of 10-play sets with the starters. The Rams, who are going to be pretty good this year, owned the first time around with the No. 1s.Share
- Thoughts on Henrietta-Seymour scrimmage
Monday, August 15th, 2011
I’m a little behind on blogs, but aftger finishing up 17 football tab stories, editing a couple dozen more and entering in almost 40 schedules, I think I have a legit excuse.
But I’ll make up for it today. Going to blog about the one scrimmage I attended (Henrietta-Seymour) and then about all the others I heard/read about.
So here are my thoughts about what I saw in Henrietta on Friday. Also, there was going to be a video but it’s having some problems being sucha big file (that’s what they tell me at least). Hopefully it’ll get up soon.
* Both defenses looked a lot better than offenses. Both team’s lines lost two or three starters from 2010, and it showed. Some bad snaps and a lot of pressure put on the QBs every time they dropped back to pass.
* Kolten Booher could have a big year. From what I saw, it looks like the Bearcats will give him a lot of run/pass options when rolling out of the pocket. Almost all his passes were on rollouts. He kept one of them in the first offensive series, and he’s so elusive in the open field that he took it a long way for a touchdown.
* As far as touchdowns, I missed Seymour’s first 15 plays but was told the Panthers didn’t score. Booher then scored before the second teams came on. During then, Seymour had an INT that would have been a touchdown (I think it was blown dead) and I seem to recall Henrietta scoring on a long pass. Seymour also had a penalty nullify a TD. Nothing much happened when the first teams went a second time for 10 plays.
* Zac Barton is Seymour’s QB. Coach Smart told me Tanner Gillispie might be used a little as a change-of-pace guy, but Barton supplies a downfield passing threat that Seymour needs (He’s No. 6 and Gillispie is 31 in the video). Seymour probably won’t be better at QB this year (Zac’s brother Aaron had a really good two years), but he Panthers will be more athletic at the position. And I thought Zac looked calm in the pocket and avoided the rush well.
* I’ve seen Blake Atnip play before, but I’m always up in the pressbox. To see a 6-8, 300-pound high schooler from 10 yards away on a football field is quite a sight.
* Henrietta’s Tyler Coleman went down with an injury to a knee he’s had surgery on before. He was in a lot of pain, but the trainer came out and worked on it, and he was able to walk off under his own power. He’s the only returning LB for Henrietta that started before, so the Bearcats will need him healthy.Share
- Carter: “Clouds”
Sunday, August 14th, 2011
In a summer where the oppressive heat just doesn’t want to let up, another friend, Brad Davis, was laid to rest earlier this week. Anyone who knew Brad had an amazingly wonderful person as a friend. He always had a kind word.
I met him originally at the all-ages music shows and then discovered some other friends of mine also knew him as well. I will miss him. He was truly a great guy.
I had the opportunity to hear Abbey Laine play and sing several songs Friday night and it was enjoyable. Over the last week or so I have been going through iPhoto looking at images of performers and I certainly have seen some Laine shows along the way. She is doing well in San Antonio and I am glad to hear that she has a compadre, Ali Holder, in Austin to play shows with.
Speaking of people in Austin, I had the opportunity to talk with Douglas Jay Boyd Saturday afternoon, who plays bass, but not the guy who was in the hair metal bands in the ‘80s but rather the guy who lives in Austin who plays in an anti-folk band called “The Sweetness.” He and the band of three talented songstresses will be playing at the Iron Horse Pub on Wednesday August 24 starting at 9 p.m. or so. I think their music will be different from things people have heard around here and that’s worth checking out.
The Sweetness story will run next Friday in NEXT and if you have a chance, do go Wednesday Aug 24. Doug has played in a variety of area bands including Slab Rat. By the way, those guys are playing FallsFest as the opening act for KC and the Sunshine Band, and for my money the opening act will be the one to see.
I have been keeping up with the Virgin Wolves, the best band in Denton, and they are doing well on their nationwide tour. They will be playing Hailey’s in Denton on Saturday, August 20, and that show will be worth seeing. If’n you’re in a traveling mood, it’s only 200 miles round trip, and there’s some great places to eat in Denton. I hear the new Jupiter House is where you now get great espresso in Denton.
I chatted with Dr. Philgood and the Let’s Get It On’s last Thursday at the open mic at The Spot, and they did great at Crystal Clear studio over the previous week. Their album is going to be out soon, and they will be playing in front of Alley Cat at the next Culture Crawl downtown in late September. Do keep your ears open because I think that band has all the potential in the world to blow up in the very best of ways.
Also at the Spot last Thursday, they had a very talented open mic event. One of the stars was Chris Roberson whose songs and performances show a real gravity for someone as young as he is. Also keep an eye on the Spot because they tell me they will start featuring bands on weekends and I introduced Mike Hitt of The Disco Rico to Roberson, and that promises to be a good combo of two area original bands.
Free music at Hotter’N Hell on the afternoon of Saturday August 27. Check it out.Share
- Scrimmages coming up
Thursday, August 11th, 2011
Scrimmages can begin tomorrow (the UIL moved the the start date up by one) and some others will take place on Saturday. Most of the coaches I’ve talked to said they are going on Friday.
I’m going to try and get out to one of them, probably Seymour at Henrietta. I’m curious to see how the Panthers are coming along after losing so many seniors. And Henrietta should be an improved bunch.
I’ll check back tomorrow with my thoughts and what I’m hearing from other scrimmages. Here’s our area’s full 11-man scrimmage schedule (Rider and WFHS can’t scrimmage because they just started this week):
Archer City at Holliday
Seymour at Henrietta
Burkburnett vs. Frisco Heritage in Bowie
Mineral Wells at Hirschi
Pilot Point at Vernon
Graham vs. Midland Greenwood in Abilene
Bowie at Lake Worth
Denton at Iowa Park
Jacksboro at Petrolia
Nocona at Windthorst
Olney at City View
Quanah at Wheeler
Anson at Munday
Gorman at ElectraShare
- If I had to predict…..
Wednesday, August 10th, 2011
Another day closer to the 2011 high school football season. It’s almost two weeks away now, and scrimmages will be coming up on Friday.
That means two weeks’ more of blogs before we get down to business. Today’s will be about predicting the area’s leading rushers for this season:
Dee Paul, Munday – He had a 2,000-yard 2010 season and should be primed for another big year and deep playoff run. I’ve never covered someone is this area who hit the 2,000-yard mark before their senior year.
Tyler Berardi, Windthorst – Windthorst is going to generate a lot of offense behind a good line. He had almost 1,400 last year and should play a lot of games because I, like most people, am expecting a lengthy postseason.
Devin Chafin, Burkburnett – Bulldogs’ spread offense is taylored around Chafin, who shows a quick burst and is built like few kids in this area. The Baylor commit looks like a Div. I athlete.
Austin Twilligear, Holliday – No one is replacing all of Tyler Cole’s workload by themselves, but Twilligear is going to pick up the biggest slack. And he is really fast. Should have lots of long TD runs.
Tate Fenoglio, Nocona – Anytime you have a pretty good sophomore season and your whole offensive line returns, good things are to be expected.
Also: Munday’s Roddrick Taylor just missed 1,000 yards a year ago and will be in the mix. Windthorst QB Joe Hoegger could also be here, but he’ll miss the opener and could be brought along slowly. I’m sure there are others who’ll emerge from nowhere and make a name for themselves.Share
- Tidbits from coaches
Tuesday, August 9th, 2011
I’ve talked to most of my high school football coaches that I need to for the 2011 football preview section (on newsstands Aug. 24). Here’s a tidbit from every coach I’ve reached:
Munday – Dee Paul’s throwing technique has been altered and it’s letting him throw a better deep ball. Before, he’d kind of twist his wrist like you’d throw a curveball and the ball wouldn’t be as crisp and sometimes wobble.
Windthorst – Quarterback Joe Hoegger is going to miss the TRN Kickoff Classic. He had knee surgery last spring and his doctor has said no contact until Sept. 1. But he’s looking good running around out there, and coach Bill Green expects him to go in the Trojans’ second game.
Olney – Coach Rodriguez does have some coaching experience with the Wing T. He was an assistant on Newton’s 3A state title in 1998, and that’s the offense they ran then. The main reason for the switch was the Cubs had a short supply of WRs.
Seymour – We’ve got ourselves a QB competition in Baylor County. Either sophomore Zac Barton (whose brother Aaron was the QB the past two years) or junior Tanner Gillispie, who made some big plays in the secondary in 2010.
Quanah – The Indians’ next new big hit at RB will be junior Brandon Heard. He’ll line up in the backfield almost all of the time rather than what Roderick Woodard did last year, when he was a leading receiver, too.
Jacksboro – The Tigers printed out several copies of Dave Campbell’s Texas Football — which had them picked fifth in the district — and papered the locker room with them. Sounds like they have some motivation.
Bowie – Didn’t talk to coach Stark, but I heard last Friday they had a Midnight Madness practice to celebrate the first day of full contact. Pretty cool deal. I’m sure there are other area programs who do something like this too, but this is the first I’ve heard about it.
Throckmorton – Four teams dropped the Greyhounds after last season, so that’s been a hassle finding replacements. And linebacker Hagen Bennett has transferred to Newcastle.
Nocona – They have the whole o-line back after starting as many as eight sophmores in 2010. Coach Keck said QB Hayden Hill is the team’s most improved player.
Archer City – Sounds like Weston Wuthrich and Dawson Reid are going to be the two quarterbacks. Wuthrich, who was a TE, will play more, but Reid will get lots of snaps and will be the starter in 2012.
City View – I’ve said they are going to the spread, but really they’ll still be a wishbone team who will add multiple formations like the two-back spread. All the o-line guys are back, and Hawkins really likes his backfield too.
Holliday – Coach Wolf says this defense could be the best he’s had, very comparable to 2006 bunch. Nine guys are back, and every starter runs a sub-5.0 second 40. That’s crazy.Share
- Teams that could make the playoffs that didn’t in 2010
Tuesday, August 9th, 2011
Today’s blog post as we count down to the regular season looks at what teams that didn’t make the playoffs last year have the best chance of doing so this season.
I’m going to list them it what I believe is the most likely chance of happening. And I must say, since so many teams make the playoffs now, there isn’t a team like Rider or Quanah was last year where you felt really good about their chances. Here we go:
* Nocona – The last spot in 3-2A Div. II seems pretty up in the air. Nocona played so many sophomores a year ago and has their whole line back. Even though they are coming off a 1-9 season, the Indians’ upside is tremendous.
* Olney – Right now, I think Seymour is the third best team in 4-A Div. I. But Olney may not be far behind the Panthers. We’ll have to see how the Wing-T decision works out, but I think they have a chance.
* Vernon – I feel pretty good that the top three teams in 6-3A a year ago will make the playoffs again, but I think Vernon could push for fourth. I know the Lions were 1-19 the past two years, but they’re going to understand the spread better and have a lot of guys back.
* WFHS – This may be optimistic, but the Coyotes will have some nice offensive weapons. And 4-4A isn’t that tough of a district compared to some (once you take out Denton Ryan and Rider). But their defense needs to get much, much better.Share
- Toughest games on a team’s schedule
Monday, August 8th, 2011
I’ve been doing a lot of typing in schedules lately, which lets me look at when some key non-district and district matchups are.
Based on what I think, here are the hardest games for each area team followed by a short thought in parenthesis.
Archer City – vs. Henrietta; vs. Stamford; vs. Windthorst; vs. Munday (pretty crazy they get all four of these teams at home).
Bowie – vs. Graham; vs. Iowa Park; at Burkburnett (all district opponents; while not a easy non-district, there’s no team as good as 6-3A folks).
Burkburnett – vs. Argyle; vs. Mineral Wells; at Iowa Park; at Graham (Bridgeport a tough one too; Rams and Bulls are best two 7-3A schools).
City View – at Henrietta; at Holliday (not sure which is toughest non-district opponent: Bells or Muenster Sacred Heart).
Electra – vs. West Texas Stinnett; at Munday; at Windthorst (last two are toughest, but Alvord could be harder than Stinnett).
Graham – at Mineral Wells; vs. Brownwood; vs. Abilene Wylie; vs. Iowa Park (first three are listed are first three games; Burkburnett also could make the list).
Henrietta – at Pottsboro; vs. Windthorst; at Holliday (first three games are against 5-2A Div. I, Paradise and Boyd follow Pottsboro).
Hirschi – at Sanger; at Holliday; at Burkburnett; vs. Graham (IP will be tough as well; Sanger’s QB was Texas Football 3A coverboy).
Holliday – at Windthorst; at Iowa Park; at Stamford; vs. Henrietta (not an easy non-district game on there at all).
Iowa Park – vs. Holliday; at Mineral Wells; at Graham; vs. Burkburnett (toughest two non-district and district games are both back-to-back).
Jacksboro – vs. Godley; at Bowie; vs. Henrietta; vs. Holliday (always one on road, one at home, one at road, one at home, etc).
Munday – vs. Stamford; vs. Windthorst (I know Coach Corcoran is worried about Jim Ned game a bunch as well).
Nocona – vs. Whitewright; at Muenster; vs. Holliday; vs. Henrietta (first two teams went 20-0 in 2010 regular season).
Olney – vs. Munday; at Windthorst; vs. Mason; at Albany (Stamford is up there too; they play five really legit teams).
Petrolia – at Archer City; vs. Windthorst; vs. Muenster; at Collinsville (starts with three road games, followed by three straight at home).
Quanah – vs. Hamlin; at Munday; vs. Clarendon (most non-district games in area with seven).
Rider – vs. Abilene Cooper; at Amarillo; at Lake Dallas; vs. Denton Ryan (two solid 5As in non-district and two toughest 4-4A contests come consecutively).
Seymour – vs. Windthorst; vs. Stamford; vs. Albany (four regular season losses all came on road so now they get those teams at home).
Vernon – vs. Sanger; vs. Burkburnett; vs. Graham; at Iowa Park (Altus is usually tough as well but sadly I’m not an Oklahoma HS football guru).
WFHS – vs. Frisco Wakeland; at Lawton Mac; at Denton Ryan; vs. Rider (toughest two district games are at the end).Share