Despite losing four current NCAA Division I players from its 2019 team to graduation and undergoing a complete overhaul of its offensive and defensive systems, The Colony finished 2019 5-3 for its fifth consecutive season with a winning record.
Although a coin flip determined the Cougars’ postseason fate, ending their run of consecutive playoff appearances at seven, The Colony battled until the final whistle – even notching a 17-point victory over Frisco Reedy in the season finale, which came on the heels of a two-week quarantine due to COVID-19 concerns within the Cougars’ football program.
Other head coaches took notice of The Colony’s determination with 12 different Cougars earning selections onto the 5-5A Division I all-district football team.
Junior Shafiq Taylor was one of six Cougars who garnered first-team honors, earning nods at both wide receiver and cornerback. He had 25 receptions for 440 yards with two touchdowns. As a shut-down cornerback, he totaled 16 tackles and two interceptions.
Other first-team selections on offense for The Colony were senior offensive lineman Josh Sanchez and junior fullback Robert Veasley, Jr. Sanchez didn’t allow a single sack, finished with 70 total cut blocks and 30 pancake blocks. Veasley, Jr., meanwhile, served as the lead blocker for a Cougar offense that averaged 171.4 rushing yards per game. He accounted for 174 of that yardage to accompany two scores.
Defensively, The Colony junior Khylon Whitehurst and seniors Stephen McCollom and Kyle Taylor made for an intimidating corps of linebackers, and all three Cougars were named to the all-district first team for their efforts.
Taylor led the Cougars in tackles with 76 to go along with 11 quarterback pressures and one sack. McCollom led The Colony in sacks with five and was second in tackles with 55. Whitehurst totaled three sacks and 11 quarterback hurries.
Earning second team all-district honors for the Cougars were seniors Kevin Albarran (punter/kicker), Benji Nelson (wide receiver) and Lawrence Smith (safety), junior Colby Cox (defensive end), sophomore William Wallis (offensive line) and freshman John Said (tight end).
Albarran finished 16-of-17 on extra points and made a 27-yard field goal. Nelson led the Cougars in receiving with 494 yards to go along with two touchdowns. Smith, who missed half of his junior season due to a dislocated knee, recorded 28 stops with two interceptions. Cox made a seamless transition to defensive end after playing at linebacker his sophomore season, registering four sacks and 31 tackles at his new position.
Billy Bowman, Jr., Seth Henigan and Ja’tavion Sanders of Class 5A Div. I state champion Denton Ryan shared district Co-MVP honors, while the Raiders also had the Staff of the Year.