Odessa Permian (1-0) at Midway (0-1)
Radio: 106.7 FM, SicEm365 app
Streaming: 365 Sports on YouTube
Breakdown: Shane Anderson’s debut as Midway’s head coach didn’t play out as he hoped as Round Rock ran away with a 69-17 blowout last Friday.
Week Two won’t get easier with traditional Texas high school power Odessa Permian coming to Panther Stadium.
Permian opened the season with a 26-15 win over El Paso Pebble Hills as Brian Mahaffey returned the opening kickoff for an 83-yard touchdown and caught 34 and 57-yard scoring passes from Rodney Hall in the fourth quarter.
“They run a flexbone triple option which is unorthodox at the Class 6A level,” Anderson said. “They can lull you to sleep and then hit you over the top with play-action passes. They’re also gigantic up front.”
Midway’s offense had some good moments as Reid Tedford hit Junior Thornton for a 75-yard touchdown, but Anderson is looking for more consistency across the board.
“We had enough big plays on offense, but we’ve obviously got to do a better job starting off defensively,” Anderson said. “Permian is a very good team. We’ve got to make them earn it.”
Hutto (0-1) at Waco High (0-1)
Radio: 92.3 FM/1660 AM, centexsportsfan.com, Centex Sports Fan app
Streaming: WISD-TV, wacoisd.org/live
Breakdown: The Lions showed some positive signs in first-year coach Linden Heldt’s debut as Thomas Chandler threw a 21-yard touchdown pass to Reggie Lewis and Omar Delao ran for a score.
But Heldt wants to see the Lions roar out of the gate faster and clean up turnovers against Hutto.
“We definitely need to start faster and come out a little more prepared,” Heldt said. “But the positive is they kept fighting. We had a couple of shots to take the lead, and the kids stayed in the game plan.”
Hutto opened the season with a 59-11 loss to College Station, but Heldt believes the Hippos are a strong team. Quarterback Grayson Doggett and running back Cyronn Miller are offensive leaders.
“They’ve got explosive playmakers on offense, and they can get on top of you in the passing game,” Heldt said. “They’re aggressive on defense and can cause fits if you’re not sound on the offensive line.”
No. 4 La Vega (1-0) at Bishop Dunne (1-0)
Radio: 94.5 FM, centexbeat.com
Breakdown: When Connally had to cancel its home game against La Vega due to COVID-19 cases in the school community this week, it didn’t take the Pirates long to find a replacement. La Vega announced on Wednesday afternoon that it would head up to Dallas to play Bishop Dunne.
That doesn’t give La Vega much time to scout the Falcons, but at this time of year live action and experience are too valuable to pass up.
Besides that, La Vega has the type of offense that is going to dictate the game plan to the opponent anyway. Last week, the Pirates up front cleared the way for running backs Naje Drakes and Bryson Roland each rushed for more than 100 yards in a 51-21 win over Katy Jordan.
Bishope Dunne kicked off with a 46-6 butt kicking of Fort Worth Trimble Tech last week. Falcons running back Jeremiah Horn rushed for 203 yards and four touchdowns in that game.
No. 9 Lorena (0-1) at No. 7 China Spring (1-0)
Streaming: looklivestreams.com/cougars, Look! Livestreams2 on YouTube
Breakdown: Lorena vs. China Spring is a good rivalry in a lot of sports. To have state rankings attached to each school in football is especially appealing.
The 3A DI Leopards started the season with a battle against Franklin, the top-ranked team in 3A DII. Franklin scored a fourth-quarter touchdown and prevailed, 27-20. Lorena felt like it could have got the win with fewer mistakes and dropped balls. The challenge this week will be to correct those things against an equally tough opponent in the 4A DII Cougars.
For China Spring, quarterback Major Bowden opened the season with a very Bowden-like game. He rushed for 200 yards, a pair of touchdowns and threw a touchdown pass as the Cougars thumped Addison Trinity.
A key matchup in this one could be Cougars D-lineman Dawson Exlline and his bunch versus Ryne Abel and the Leopards passing game. Abel passed for 259 yards against Franklin.
A year ago, China Spring posted a 42-13 win at Lorena. The Leopards will try to take a better shot this time.
Whitney (0-1) at Robinson (0-1)
Streaming: NFHS Network
Breakdown: Although Robinson lost its season opener against Taylor, 32-13, Robinson coach Robert Rubel saw plenty of positive signs as he brings along a young team.
“We could see a huge difference in the second half,” Rubel said. “We started punching and showed we were going to fight.”
Robinson sophomore quarterback Aiden Stanford popped a 67-yard touchdown run. But the Rockets will try to get more players going this week. Rubel likes the potential of RBs Blaine Lathern and Christian Lujan and receivers Trey Stout and Grayson Martin.
Whitney lost to Quinlan Ford last week, but QB Garrett Peacock had a good start to the season. He passed for 126 yards and 3 TDs and rushed for 98 and another touchdown. Kyler Cryns had the best game of the Wildcat WRs with three catches for 53 yards and a TD.
Whitney’s biggest challenge so far in this new season might be waiting for a young defense to mature.
Troy (0-1) at Mexia (0-1)
Breakdown: It’s been a chaotic couple of weeks for Mexia as defensive coordinator Aaron Nowell took the reins as interim head coach following the resignation of Brady Bond.
The Blackcats opened the season with a 42-21 loss to Lake Belton, but Nowell is optimistic that they can quickly get back on track.
“We were down 28-8 at half, but we were four to six plays from being tied or having the lead,” Nowell said. “We started coming back and had a chance to cut it to seven when we threw a pick. It sounds like coachspeak to say the kids played hard, but you know it when you see it.”
With defensive linemen Dontavious Daniels and Deandra Sandles leading the way, the Blackcats are looking for a better defensive effort against Troy, which dropped a 62-0 decision to powerful Salado in the season opener under first-year head coach Steve Hermesmeyer.
“They’ve got a new staff at Troy and they run the wing-T offense,” Nowell said. “That always causes problems with the scout team because it’s really hard to simulate that look.”
Groesbeck (1-0) at Rice (0-0)
Streaming: Groesbeck ISD on YouTube
Breakdown: It’s hard to find too many nits to pick from the Goats’ opener, as they pulverized Corsicana Mildred, 59-14, last week. But veteran Groesbeck coach Jerry Bomar has reminded his Goats that they haven’t reached the mountain’s summit after just one game.
“That’s the thing about a really big win to start the season, everyone starts feeling really good,” Bomar said. “We’ve just got to be careful and really guard against that, because Rice has a really good football team.”
Bomar described the Bulldogs as a physical, slot-T team that will present a much different look for Groesbeck than Mildred did in the opener. Rice is coming off a 5-6 playoff season from 2020, and returns some beef on the offensive and defensive lines in the presence of Ethan Gray (5-10, 260) and Taylor Hrnjak (6-0, 230).
“They’ve made the playoffs five or six years in a row, so it’s a good test,” Bomar said.
Allen Lewis broke out to a splendid start to his 2021 campaign as the Goats’ quarterback, throwing for four touchdowns and running for another.
Cameron Yoe (0-1) at Bellville (1-0)
Streaming: NFHS Network
Radio: 105.1 FM, kmil.com
Breakdown: Probably no local team produced a more entertaining game last week than the Yoemen. Rick Rhoades’ team fell behind 27-17 at the half to Lago Vista, but stormed back to tie the score by the end of regulation. The teams fought to a triple-overtime marathon before Lago Vista emerged with a 64-62 win.
The Yoemen probably don’t want to see Bellville RB Richard Reese again, but they’ll have to anyway. Last year Reese and the end zone proved to be as sweet a combo as chocolate and peanut butter, as the tailback racked up a school-record 424 all-purpose yards and seven touchdowns in leading Bellville to a 54-41 win over the then-ninth-ranked Yoemen. Reese is back for another go-round, as he was a junior last year. He carried three times for 114 yards and two touchdowns in the Brahmas’ 49-0 win over Giddings last week.
But don’t overlook Cameron’s own firepower. Phaibian Bynaum is a big-time playmaker who is coming off a 127-yard, two-TD rushing performance in the Lago Vista game. Also, keep an eye on LB Fabian Salomon, who had 11 tackles in Week 1 and should be one of the more prolific defensive stoppers in Central Texas this year.
No. 4 Crawford (1-0) at Bruceville-Eddy (0-1)
Breakdown: The Crawford fans probably had their eyes on new starting QB Luke Torbert in a season-opening win over Goldthwaite, but Pirates coach Greg Jacobs was focused on the offensive and defensive lines.
All saw plenty to like.
Jacobs said the offensive line graded out particularly well. Meanwhile, Torbert successfully ran the Crawford offense despite a somewhat one-dimensional approach. A pregame storm drenched the Pirates’ stadium and limited the passing game. Crawford managed to run its way to a 35-6 victory.
Bruceville-Eddy was on the other end of the momentum scale in its first game as it lost to Millsap, 41-6. Eagles RB Chad Pate provided a bright spot as he rushed for 106 yards on 16 carries.
Live Oak (1-0) at Blum (1-0)
Breakdown: This private vs. public school squabble sets up as not just one of the best six-man matchups in our area, but the entire state.
Live Oak coach Brice Helton was proud of the way his team responded in its opening 66-20 win over Methodist Home last week, considering the Falcons endured “the strangest preseason that I’ve ever had,” said Helton, who himself had to sit out for a stretch due to a bout with COVID-19.
Helton is impressed with Blum’s physicality. “They’ll be the biggest physical test we face, and they’re well-coached, too,” Helton said.
Of course, Blum’s Cooper Thornhill is no less praising of Live Oak, and called Will Nicholas “extremely instinctive” and ATH Albree Sharp “one of the fastest kids we’ll see.” The Bobcats will try to counter those Falcon weapons with a defense that is “as good as I’ve had this early, including my days (as an assistant) at Abbott,” Thornhill said. He spent a large chunk of the offseason honing Blum’s defense after the Bobcats lost to May, 92-86, in the state semifinals in 2020.
Both coaches would like to see some offensive improvement after some ragged stretches last week. Blum, in particular, fumbled seven times in its win over Aquilla, losing five.
Best of the Rest
University (0-1) at Granbury (0-1): Clearly the Trojans have much work to do following an opening 68-7 loss at A&M Consolidated, but at least Granbury offers a much better opportunity at the first win of the Kent Laster era. … West (1-0) at Tyler Grace (0-1): Few teams looked more impressive in Week 1 than the Trojans, who likely won’t show much grace to Tyler Grace, at least on the scoreboard. … Hillsboro (1-0) at Krum (1-0): The Eagles gave new coach Steve Almuete a successful debut with a road win, why not make it 2-0? … Holland (0-1) at Bosqueville (1-0): The Dogs’ bite may be worse than their bark, after surrendering zero points through their first three quarters in a 14-6 win over Clifton last week.
Trib staff’s Week 2 high school football predictions
|NON-DISTRICT||CHAD CONINE||BRICE CHERRY||JOHN WERNER|
|Odessa Permian at Midway (7 p.m.)||Permian||Permian||Permian|
|Hutto at Waco High (7 p.m.)||Hutto||Hutto||Hutto|
|Round Rock at Belton||R. Rock||R. Rock||R. Rock|
|Magnolia West at Temple||Mag. West||Temple||Mag. West|
|University at Granbury (7 p.m.)||Granbury||Granbury||Granbury|
|La Vega at Dallas Bishop Dunne (7 p.m.)||La Vega||La Vega||La Vega|
|Hillsboro at Krum||Krum||Krum||Krum|
|Troy at Mexia||Mexia||Mexia||Mexia|
|Lorena at China Spring||C. Spring||C. Spring||C. Spring|
|Gatesville at Glen Rose (7 p.m.)||Gatesville||Gatesville||Gatesville|
|Whitney at Robinson||Whitney||Whitney||Whitney|
|West at Tyler Grace Community (7 p.m.)||West||West||West|
|Fairfield at Brownsboro||Fairfield||Brownsboro||Fairfield|
|Groesbeck at Rice||Groesbeck||Groesbeck||Groesbeck|
|Teague at Lago Vista||Lago Vista||Lago Vista||Lago Vista|
|Cameron Yoe at Bellville||Bellville||Bellville||Cameron Yoe|
|McGregor at Mart||Mart||Mart||Mart|
|Clifton at Academy||Academy||Academy||Academy|
|Riesel at Hamilton (7 p.m.)||Hamilton||Hamilton||Hamilton|
|Holland at Bosqueville||Bosqueville||Bosqueville||Bosqueville|
|Crawford at Bruceville-Eddy||Crawford||Crawford||Crawford|
|Hubbard at Itasca||Hubbard||Hubbard||Hubbard|
|Valley Mills at Santo (7 p.m.)||V. Mills||V. Mills||V. Mills|
|Dawson at Leon||Dawson||Leon||Dawson|
|Marlin at Comal Pieper JV||Marlin||Marlin||Marlin|
|Moody at Hico (7 p.m.)||Hico||Hico||Hico|
|Wortham at Rosebud-Lott||Wortham||R-Lott||R-Lott|
|Meridian at Frost (7 p.m.)||Meridian||Frost||Meridian|
|Italy at Chilton||Italy||Chilton||Italy|
|Burton at Bishop Reicher (7 p.m.)||Burton||Burton||Burton|
|Texas Wind at Malakoff Cross Roads||MCR||MCR||MCR|
|Live Oak at Blum||Live Oak||Blum||Blum|
|Aquilla at Bynum||Bynum||Aquilla||Bynum|
|Covington at Johnson County Home School||Covington||Johnson||Covington|
|Milford at Abbott||Abbott||Abbott||Abbott|
|FW THESA Home School at Coolidge||Coolidge||Coolidge||Coolidge|
|Gholson at Bluff Dale||Bluff Dale||Bluff Dale||Bluff Dale|
|Penelope at Trinidad||Trinidad||Penelope||Trinidad|
|Evant at Moran||Evant||Evant||Evant|
|Jonesboro at Perrin-Whitt||Jonesboro||Jonesboro||Jonesboro|
|Cranfills Gap at Mount Calm (7 p.m.)||Gap||Gap||Gap|
|Avalon at Iredell||Iredell||Iredell||Iredell|
|Oglesby at Morgan||Morgan||Morgan||Morgan|
|RR Christian at Vanguard||Vanguard||Vanguard||Vanguard|
|Ranger at Eagle Christian||ECA||ECA||ECA|
|Methodist Children's Home at Bryan St. Joseph Catholic (7 p.m.)||BSJ||BSJ||BSJ|
|Season to date||34-14||30-18||31-17|