2A and 3A football, the heart of the gridiron and most of the time overlooked by the mainstream media. Not here in the 806, especially since we have the back-to-back state Champions from Canadian moving up to class 3A Division II this fall. Post drops down to 2A and we still have teams like New Deal, Littlefield, Slaton, Childress, and Muleshoe; who will join Shallowater in District 1-3A for an assured rematch of the 3A Regional Quarterfinal that the Mustangs pulled out in a thriller last year! So, here goes our top 10 games in 3A and 2A play for 2016 below!
1. CANADIAN VS CHILDRESS / OCT. 7TH 7:00PM/ CANADIAN, TX
What a game this will be in district 1-3A DII! This game should decide the winner of the district unless Spearman makes some significant noise. Cameron Copley, Holton Hufstedler, and Manny Ramsey lead the dangerous champions back in 2016 with the expectation to go back to Cowboys Stadium in December to win another title. Garett Stephens, Bo Lott, and a host of other talented players will lead the Bobcats into this game with a chance to defeat the Wildcats. It will come down to Quarterback play and if Douthitt will step in with ease and run this juggernaut offense, or if it will take a step back after losing the Cook’s and Tanner Schafer.
2. IDALOU VS POST/ SEP.16TH/ 7:30PM/IDALOU, TX
I actually thought these two would meet in the Regional Quarterfinals, but it didn’t come to pass. That’s ok with me because I’ll get to see this game in September. A great out-of-district matchup for both squads as they will be favored to win their respective districts. Both teams love the ground game and suffocating defense. Should be one of the best games of the year.
3. MULESHOE VS SHALLOWATER/ NOV. 4TH/ 7:00PM/ SHALLOWATER, TX
This game should be just as intense as the Regional 3A Quarterfinal that was played last year when Cooper Ogle led the Mustangs to victory, 35-21. Will the Mules be healthy? Last year’s teams suffered major injuries at critical times to hamper their roster. If Dagen, Jason, Kevin, and Beto can remain on the field, I don’t see why they wouldn’t win this game. Can Cutter and Braxton pick up where Cooper and Chris left off? Coach Terry will have the Mustang nation ready, so will Coach Wood and the Mule Nation….
4. SEAGRAVES VS HAMLIN/OCT.14TH/ 7:00PM/ SEAGRAVES, TX
Seagraves, coming off of back-to-back 2A DII state semifinal appearances, will head into 2016 in a new district and renewed hopes for returning to the state semifinals again. Steve Heryford will have some great players to work with this fall and will be ready to let Richard Longoria handle the load in the backfield; for sure at tailback, but maybe even at the Quarterback position for the Eagles. Hamlin will be the game to decide that district winner early in October.
5. POST VS HAWLEY/ 4-2A DI DISTRICT GAME
Both of these teams went deep in the playoffs last year and both will go deep, again. Post dropping down a class obviously gives them an advantage in this contest, but Hawley has a hell of a roster returning with the likes of Quay Stokes; a player that combined for 3,000 total yards last year for the Bearcats. AJ Escobedo and AJ Reed will anchor the Bold Gold. This game will decide the district winner and both may meet again in the playoffs down the line as well.
6. LITTLEFIELD AT STRATFORD/ SEPT. 23RD/ 7:00PM/ STRATFORD, TX
What a game this will be! Stratford, along with Canadian, can play up to anyone in football..they can also win the game too. Chris Douglas and Zachary Aragon will lead the charge in the backfield for the Wildcats, while Fernando Jacquez and Gage Brooks will lead a state title-contending team for the Elks. An elite battle of two teams that should fare well in the postseason! Great scheduling from both squads!
7. NEW DEAL VS ROOSEVELT/ AUG. 26TH/ 7:30PM/ NEW DEAL, TX
A great early test for both squads as both of these units will need to rebuild after losing some major parts to their squads, and Roosevelt replaced their head coach altogether! Teagan Cooksey will be counted on to be the leader of this Eagles bunch that lost a little explosiveness when Zyketh Campbell moved out of their district. New Deal has Jaxson Durham and Jett Whitfield; a player that may run for 2,000 yards next year if he is injury free. The game will be won by the team that can gel the fastest, even though this game won’t matter much in the spectrum of things in the end.
8. MEMPHIS VS QUANAH/ SEPT.16TH/ 7:30PM/ MEMPHIS, TX
Both of these teams come into 2016 with state title aspirations on their mind. Memphis is loaded with David Dickson and Nick Adame leading the charge for the Cyclones. Quanah, on the other hand, will be led by Tyler Fambrough and Trey Gomez. The Indians have moved out of the 806 area as far as district play goes, but will be a thorn in every 2A DII team in the playoffs. This may be a preview game of a state semifinal, so if you are in this area make sure to tune in!
9. MULESHOE VS LITTLEFIELD/ OCT. 28TH/ 7:00PM/ MULESHOE, TX
The Mules and the Wildcats.. One of the biggest rivalries in the 806, period. They will not meet in the last week of the season as usual, but the game will still count large on both team’s district title chances. Throw the records out of the window and get ready for a bruising game between two great programs. Coach Huseman and Coach Wood, Beto Diaz and Chris Douglas. Get your popcorn ready, and make sure to bring your blanket because it always gets cold when these two teams play!
10. WELLINGTON VS CROSBYTON/ OCT.28TH/ 7:00PM/ WELLINGTON, TX
This game will go a long way to deciding who wins district 2-2A DII. Kaden Hunter, Drake Welch and Jose Tellez skyrocket Wellington into the season with a lot of people thinking they may head back to Cowboys stadium now that they have dropped down to 2A DII. Crosbyton, with Tim Childers squarely in the front, will be in the thick of the district race and may go a few rounds deep in the playoffs if some players step up for the Chieftains this fall. I know one thing is for certain; Coach Brannon Rodgers will have the Chieftain Nation ready! A game that will be decided in the trenches, whoever can impose their will..will win the game.