The Texas high school football season is about to kickoff. As we approach Thursday kickoffs, and nearly a full-schedule on Friday night, WFAA.com takes a look at the Top 10 in class 5A. With the Top 5 revealed Thursday, a quick look at 6-10:
10. Ennis: A great return to the Class 4A Division II state semifinals last season, the Lions again are cycling through a strong stockpile of athletic classes. Gone is last year’s Baylor commit running back Terence Williams but returning is Texas A&M linebacker commit James Lockhart and all-district linebacker Ke’idre Flowers. QB Devin Smith is a talented dual-threat with lots of experience and top receiver Donta Thompson returning.
Player to watch: Junior Tre Elliott was a big play-maker at WR as a 6-3 sophomore. He’ll be moved around formations to have multiple impact as a rusher and receiver.
9. Lovejoy: Dart-throwing lefty QB Bowman Sells returns after missing last season with an injury. The 6-foot-3 Sells (with multiple major college offers) is deadly accurate on roll-outs to another versatile receiving corps which will be led by elusive junior Aaron Fuller, already with an SMU offer. Lovejoy also is building a reputation of developing offensive linemen with Army commit pledge Jake Baumert (6-3, 290) and Dan Cole (6-2, 280) returning. Ryan Cox was elevated to head coach to replace Matt Green (took over Marble Falls) and that’s because Lovejoy has a relatively new program which needs consistency rather than anything resembling a shakeup.
Player to watch: Junior linebacker Kevin Davis looked great in summer for a group which wants to be remembered for other than the 159 points it gave up last three games.
8. Wylie: Having survived the usually competitive disaster of opening of a second high school in the ISD, Wylie got on another playoff roll last season to end up in the 4A Division I quarterfinals. QB Carsen Cook, RB Tristen Clark and WRs Jordan Whaley and Darius Carter are consistent, productive and have a knack for winning. Rice 6-5 commit Castin Neumeyer anchors the line. DT Divine Rockwell leads another feisty, dug-in defense.
Player to watch: Transfer LB Jacob Hunt from Denison is a terrific player with father and uncle legacies at Texas Tech and TCU.
7. Mansfield Timberview: It was only 2011 that Timberview was playing in the Class 5A Division II state semifinals before losing to eventual state champ Spring Dekaney. The Wolves have a half-dozen starters returning who went to the playoffs in a district with Cedar Hill, DeSoto and Midlothian and South Grand Prairie. Senior Myron Galliard (5–9, 160) is a terrific playmaker and can be moved around formations. The SMU commit is productive as receiver/running back/returner.
Player to watch: The junior dual-threat QB Devin Williams (5-9, 170) transfers from Fort Worth Southwest where he threw for 3,160 yards last season.
6. The Colony: This is the school which has I-formation/ Veer style running backs for the old-school, smash-mouth toughness coach Rudy Rangel. And The Colony should run. The Cougars are very good at it. Look for junior Khalil Banks (6-0, 205) to become the Humvee du jour. Banks arrived to varsity the week after Navy signee Bryan Hammond injured his knee and promptly rushed for 100 in his of the last three games. The won-player that Iowa assistant coach Bobby Kennedy (former Mack Brown assistant at Texas) has stolen is senior linebacker commit Justin Jinning (6-2, 200) who gets to roam a little freer because of a strong trio of Tyrone Brooks and j Junior Alec Gibbons can play running back, but he’s got a play-making future at linebacker.
Player to watch: Pick-your-poison defensive lineman, Jordan Higashida and Julian Abdallah.