We all know about the superstars that are returning for 2016, but what about the newcomers and players that have been waiting their turn to shine on the gridiron? What player on their respective team is about make an immediate impact to their varsity team this fall between the lines? We scoured through all of our classes and came up with ten players that the 806 better be ready to see make a significant impact with their football team’s in a couple of months.
1.BRYSON DAILY- ABERNATHY ANTELOPES
A quarterback/running back hybrid of sorts, the young man is fearless. Also lat’s say this, he’s good! He had an outstanding year on Abernathy’s eighth grade team and has a highlight reel full of explosive hits, jukes, passes and blocks to cement that statement. He has the right mentor (his dad) and some great coaches around him for 2016 and beyond. He is really about to take off now.
2. BETO DIAZ- MULESHOE MULES
Beto Diaz has been oft-injured his entire high school career, hence his number has changed from number three to number twelve for his Senior season finale. If he is healthy, it will be like Muleshoe didn’t miss a step with the departure of Danny Campos because Beto is a hell of a dual-threat quarterback himself. Dangerous enough to pulverize any team he faces this year in the 1-3A DI District, he should fare well for the Mules under Coach Woods’ tutelage. Expect Beto to have an all-district season.
3. CUTTER SPARKS- SHALOWATER MUSTANGS
A new year brought about a plethora of changes for the Mustangs; a new coach, new players, and a new leader at the quarterback position in Cutter Sparks. Cutter does what his name says very eloquently; cuts, dashes, sprints, and will flat-out run you over if you’re in his way. He has help this year with Braxton Jurado and Brody Hendrick to anchor a solid option-style attack for Shallowater that will pose immediate threats to any defense. He will have a great season for the ‘Stangs.
4. MICHAEL PHURGESON- POST ANTELOPES
Michael was about to have a great season in 2015 until he got injured in the preseason for the Antelopes. This fall should be the season we were looking for from him last year as he will team up with AJ Reed and AJ Escobedo to form a lethal triple-threat for the Bold Gold. As Coach Pittman stated, “Michael will be one of or kids that will open some eyes.” Coach, my eyes are open, and I’m ready to see it!
5. GARRISON JOHNSON- FRENSHIP TIGERS
He just might be the best player on this list to make a breakthrough in 2016. He rushed for 1,189 yards and 15 touchdowns in six games and a half last year for Trinity Christian. Why would he be on a breakthrough let you say? Well, he now switches over to the tougher district in the 806, 2-6A with the likes of Tascosa, Permian, Midland Lee and San Angelo Central waiting to take him down. He is so good in my opinion that it won’t matter; he still will put up some gaudy numbers for Frenship nation and be counted on for Coach Davis and the Tigers all season.
6. CARSON HAUK- PLAINVIEW BULLDOGS
Carson will be the quarterback for Coach Rhodes and the Plainview “Angry Red” Bulldogs this season. Last year, he was a knockout strong safety and will bring that tough mentality to Plainview’s ground-and-pound running attack. A stout young man with great vision, look for him to breakthrough and lead the Bulldogs to the playoffs in a very tough 3-5A district!
7. CHRIS DOUGLAS- LITTLEFIELD WILDCATS
Chris rushed for 975 yards last year behind Nate Herrera and Bryson Calaway in Huseman’s offense. This year he will emerge as the number one tailback for Littlefield and even if you key on him, it’s hard to get a read on where the play is going due to so much movement before the snap for the Wildcats. He should be first team all-district in 1-3A DI and with a healthy campaign, may find himself on all-state team too.
8. KADE McBRYDE-STRATFORD ELKS
Kade played outside linebacker for Stratford last year for their team who went to the Regional Final in 2A DI before losing to the eventual state champions from Canadian. Now he steps into the quarterback position for the Elks on a team that may win the championship in 2016. Kade, tagged up with Gage Brooks in the backfield, will be very hard for teams to beat. He will be an intricate part of why, or why not Stratford does or doesn’t win the title this fall.
9. JOSH MOORE-LUBBOCK-COOPER PIRATES
Josh is already a Division One prospect, and holding six offers so far in his Senior season as a wide receiver and an athlete. Since he is new to the area, he is obviously a breakthrough player for the West Texas in 2016. He can play quarterback, tailback, receiver, and will play some special teams for Coach Kattwinkel too. Cooper has championship aspirations this season and if Josh has the season we think he will, lookout for the Pirate nation!
10. CORBIN DOUTHITT- CANADIAN WILDCATS
No other player is set up to put up big numbers in 2016 like Corbin is for the Wildcats. Cameron Copley and Manny Ramsey return to the offense along with some great blockers as well. Douthitt had plenty of time to learn under the 2A Player of the Year, Tanner Schafer, and play in every game for the Wildcats; sometimes for an entire half as Canadian torched teams all season en route to their second-straight 2A DI title. In a new classification, 1-3A DII, the Wildcats will still claw their way to a state title appearance, and that will be aided by Corbin and that cannon arm for sure.
Watch out for Trey Stephens from Coronado too, he is on Texas A&M’s board already as a linebacker prospect. Jett Whitfield from New Deal will also be a great player for the Lions!