FOOTBALL: Dave Campbell’s favors Titans, Indians in respective districts
The latest edition of Dave Campbell’s Texas Football magazine predicts Memorial will win the District 9-5A Division I championship and Port Neches-Groves will top District 12-5A Division II standings again.
Meanwhile, PNG senior offensive lineman Jaylen Garth earned high distinction with a spot on the Whataburger Super Team first-team offense.
Memorial, which finished second to New Caney in the new district last season, is picked to win its third district championship in four years. The Titans shared the District 22-5A crown in 2016 and 2017.
Titans junior defensive end Jordan Thomas was named the district preseason defensive MVP. He had 32 tackles (nine for losses) and five sacks.
New Caney is picked second, followed by Kingwood Park, Porter, Houston Austin, Galena Park, Goose Creek Memorial and Houston Wisdom.
PNG is going for its fourth district championship in a row, but first outright in the streak. Senior linebacker Santiago Agudelo, who collected 100 tackles, is the district’s preseason defensive MVP, while Nederland junior running back Kade Scott (1,085 yards, 10 touchdowns) is hailed preseason offensive MVP.
Nederland settled for a share of the 2018 12-5A-II crown after losing the Bum Phillips Bowl to host PNG 34-21 in Week 11, and the Bulldogs are predicted to wind up second in 2019.
Rounding out the 12-5A-II prognostications are, in order, Barbers Hill, Crosby, Baytown Lee, Santa Fe, Vidor and Dayton.
Garth is a 6-foot-4, 285-pound offensive right tackle who verbally committed to Texas, where early PNG graduate Roschon Johnson has quickly ascended up the quarterback chart behind Ehlinger. Johnson won district and The News MVP honors in each of his three varsity seasons.
The 2018 season marks the second for Class 5A to use two divisions for district play. Only Class 6A continues to use unified districts.
In other district predictions of local interest (in order):
- 21-6A: North Shore, West Brook, Sheldon C.E. King, Channelview, Deer Park, Beaumont United, La Porte and Baytown Sterling;
- 11-4A-I: Splendora, Huffman, Lumberton, Little Cypress-Mauriceville, Bridge City and Livingston;
- 10-4A-II: Silsbee, West Orange-Stark, Hamshire-Fannett, Liberty, Hardin-Jefferson (WOS linebacker Tyrone Brown is the preseason defensive MVP);
- 12-3A-I: East Chambers, Woodville, Orangefield, Buna, Anahuac, Hardin, Kirbyville and Warren; and
- 12-2A-II: Grapeland, Lovelady, Evadale, West Hardin, Colmesneil and Burkeville. Sabine Pass, which was assigned to the district last year and canceled the remainder of the season after two games with a low number of available players, will play a non-UIL schedule this season for development reasons.
The 400-page DCTF magazine, which includes a dual cover featuring University of Texas quarterback Sam Ehlinger and players from Duncanville and North Shore highlighting the Dallas-Houston metro rivalry, will hit newsstands and grocery shelves approximately July 1. North Shore, from the Galena Park ISD, stunned Duncanville 41-36 on a 45-yard Dematrius Davis-to-A.J. Carter Hail Mary pass with no time left in last December’s 6A Division I state championship game.
I.C. Murrell: 721-2435. Twitter: @ICMurrellPANews
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