5-6A Preview

For the last 14 years, it’s been Allen and everyone else.

Allen has not lost a district game since 2010, has won a district championship every year since 2006 and has captured five state championships.

Rodney Webb is one of the few head coaches to overcome Allen’s mystique, using a late two-point conversion to help Rockwall trip up the Eagles, 60-59, last year in the second round of the playoffs. Webb left Rockwall last offseason and will now oppose Allen in district play for the next two seasons coaching Class 6A Division II state runner-up Denton Guyer.

Don’t count out Prosper. The Eagles were state quarterfinalists a year ago and they had Rockwall on the ropes early after jumping out to an early 14-0 lead during their playoff matchup at Ford Center. Quarterback Jackson Berry, now a senior, threw for 345 yards in that game, which the Yellow Jackets won, 59-42.  

A late field goal in a 10-7 win over crosstown rival McKinney Boyd and a loss by Plano to Prosper lifted McKinney into the playoffs, giving Marcus Shavers his second postseason berth in as many seasons at the helm. McKinney edged Garland Naaman Forest 13-10 in the first round for Shavers’ first playoff win at McKinney, then lost 38-27 to Waco Midway the following week.

Little Elm makes the move from Class 5A to 6A this season. The Lobos’ secondary took a big hit after they lost cornerback Ryan Watts to graduation and his subsequent departure to Ohio State. 

The Top Five: Which Games to Watch this Year

Allen at Cedar Hill

Oct. 9: One of three non-district games for Allen against playoff teams from a year ago, the Eagles will look to slow down Longhorns senior dual-threat quarterback Kaidon Salter, committed to Tennessee. Allen isn’t lacking in talent either but has to replace 10 defensive starters. They’ll get an early-season test against the always dangerous Longhorns.

Guyer at Prosper

Oct. 30: A battle of preseason top 25 teams in the state. This will be the first-ever matchup between the two schools despite being separated by 25 miles. Eagles senior quarterback Jackson Berry helped stake his team to an early 14-0 lead on Webb’s Rockwall team in last year’s playoffs. Berry threw for 345 yards in the loss.

Little Elm at Braswell

Oct. 30: Separated by just 7 miles, Little Elm and Braswell face off on the gridiron for the first time. The Lobos made the jump from 5A Division 1 to 6A after realignment. The Bengals were a playoff team a year ago for the first time in the program’s short, four-year history, losing to Red Oak in the second round of the 5A Div. II playoffs.

Guyer at Allen

Nov. 13: Originally scheduled to participate in the Tom Landry Classic, two state powers will clash at Eagle Stadium. Allen has won five state championships since 2008 while Guyer captured back-to-back titles in 2012 and 2013. The Eagles are 47-0 at Eagle Stadium, but Guyer head coach Rodney Webb led his Rockwall squad to a playoff win over Allen last year. 

McKinney at McKinney Boyd

Nov. 27: Will the “Crosstown Showdown” again come down to a field goal? Two of the last three meetings between the two schools have been decided by three points. The Lions got a 24-yard field goal from Seth Cox late in the fourth quarter in last year’s game at McKinney ISD Stadium to lift McKinney to a 10-7 win and qualify for the playoffs.

 

For continued news and coverage on the local sports scene, follow Matt Welch on Twitter.

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