Former TJ quarterbacks to square off as coaches

Published 11:12 pm Wednesday, December 2, 2015

The glory days of Thomas Jefferson High School will be on display at Cypress’ Berry Center this Saturday.
Former Yellow Jackets quarterbacks Todd Dodge and Craig Stump are set to face off in the Class 6A Division I playoffs as coaches.
Dodge is the head coach for the Austin Westlake Chaparrals and Stump guides the Atascocita Eagles.
The game is set for 3 p.m. and both teams come in at 12-1.
Dodge starred at TJ under coach Ronnie Thompson. He set the state record for most passing yards in a season as a senior in 1980 with 3,135 yards. It was the first time in Texas high school football history a quarterback threw for more than 3,000 yards.
He led the Yellow Jackets to the 1980 Class 5A state championship game against Odessa Permian. Permian won the title, 28-19.
Stump then took the reins as quarterback and led the Yellow Jackets to 10-0-1 and 10-1 records.
Now the two meet for the first time as head coaches.
“It is a credit to all our coaches and the kids to still be playing in December,” Stump said. “A lot of things have to go right for it to happen.”
Stump said he and Dodge see each other at different events throughout the year, including coaching schools.
“Being a part of this game and to coach against Todd is a lot of fun,” Stump said. “It is a great thing for the ex-Thomas Jefferson guys. I am sure they are excited so it is good for the Port Arthur community.”
Dodge set the high school records for most career completions (382) and most completions in a season (221) in an era when the passing game was not as popular as it is today. He finished second in career passing yards behind current Denver Broncos coach Gary Kubiak.
Dodge won four state titles as the coach of Southlake Carroll. He is a 2005 inductee into the Texas High School Football Hall of Fame. Stump started his head-coaching career at Beaumont Kelly before moving on to Beaumont West Brook and Atascocita.

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About Gabriel Pruett

Gabriel Pruett has worked with both the Port Arthur News and Orange Leader since 2000. A majority of the time has been spent covering all aspects of Southeast Texas high school sports. Pruett's claim to fame is...being able to write his own biographical information for this website.

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