When one of the state’s most popular football magazines, Dave Campbell’s Texas Football, hits newsstands Friday, several local teams and their fans will have plenty to get excited for next season.

The expectations will be as high as they can be for La Marque, as the magazine has the Cougars tabbed as its preseason No. 1 team in the state and projected state champion in Division II-4A.

Dave Campbell’s analysis points to La Marque’s fast-paced rushing attack featuring a trio of talented running backs — Ladarrian Ellis-Jones, Daequan Jones and Alex Cooper — and Bellaire High transfer Jalen Williams at quarterback as a key reason the Cougars will be favored to bring home a state title.

After quarterbacking the team last season, Ellis-Jones is expected to be featured more as a rusher in 2014, where the magazine expects great things. Ellis-Jones was named to the publication’s Preseason 4A All-State Team as a utility player and is its preseason District 10-4A MVP.

La Marque head coach Mike Jackson was named as the Coach of the Year on Dave Campbell’s Preseason Class 4A All-State Team.

Texas City made Dave Campbell’s preseason top 40 statewide poll in class 5A at No. 37, but the Stings have three schools in their own district ranked ahead of them. The Stings will have to make up for the loss of 42 seniors and return just four starters on each side of the ball in what should be a very difficult District 23-5A.

The clear star of the Texas City squad, according to the magazine, will be linebacker D’Vonta Hinton, who was named Second Team defense on Dave Campbell’s All-State Super Team and was a Preseason Class 5A All-State pick. Hinton, a Texas Tech commit, was also named preseason district MVP.

No local teams cracked the preseason top 40 poll in class 6A, but the Clear Creek Wildcats were highlighted as a potential dark horse that could have a successful season after flying under the radar.

The Wildcats, led by returning stars Landon Etzel at wide receiver and defensive end Nik Daniels, are the magazine’s pick to win District 24-6A, which features many local standouts.

Running back Matthew Guidry of Clear Springs, picked to finish third in the district, was highlighted by the magazine as a “money player” in class 6A. The magazine called Guidry, who is used by the Chargers as a running and receiving weapon, a talent worth the price of admission. Guidry also is Dave Campbell’s preseason district offensive MVP.

Clear Falls is projected to finish fifth in the district, but had two star players recognized by the magazine. Defensive lineman Rahn Bailey was named to the Preseason 6A All-State Team, and linebacker Marcus Foster was picked as preseason district defensive MVP.

Other prognostications made by the magazine include:

• Friendswood, moving up from 4A to 6A, finishing second in District 24-6A;

• Dickinson making the playoffs with a fourth-place finish in 24-6A;

• Santa Fe finishing sixth out of eight teams in District 23-5A;

• Ball High finishing seventh in 23-5A;

• Hitchcock just missing the cut for the playoffs with a fifth-place finish in District 14-3A; and

• High Island qualifying for the postseason with a second-place finish in District 16-1A.

Contact Sports Editor James LaCombe at 409-683-5242 or james.lacombe@galvnews.com.

(5) comments

JBG JBG

Mr. Lacombe,
You are the man! You told this audience something today, what I told them two months ago in my annual SMACKTALKER'S update! The Cat is Back. Dr. Jack, is BACK!!!!
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Another thing I want to say, is that AUGUST Is just around the corner! That means the Ball High Tors are in trouble! "Hey Heyyyyyyyy, Gonna Be A Showwwwdown, Heya Heyyyyy,..Gonna be a Showdownnn...... Showdown........... !
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One last thing this morning. I heard that the TWINS are gone,....Mr. Lynch and Mr. Allen are gone too! Know what that means right? That means TC is in TROUBLE too!
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I CAN'T WAIT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

JBG JBG

Ahhhhhhhhhhhh lets go! Get them ready Jack!! We gonna send you out in style!

Robert Buckner

It ain't gonna happen JBG. By then LM will only play on Saturday afternoons because the Board will not be able to pay the light bill for the stadium.

JBG JBG

Jack! Talk to Bobby .....ahhhh I mean JBG! Ahhhhhhahahah ohhhhhhhhh! Look here Jack, I'm going to need a Smacktalker State Ring ordered at my expense of coarse. When we win the State this year. Now it is no more than I deserve!
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I want to show it off when I next meet my "COUNTRY BOY" relatives from up yonder on the Brazos! Think about it Jack, we got some time!

JBG JBG

Well here we are tipping upon July! What comes after July? August right? What month will the Battle of The Causeway be played in? Right, in August! BALL HIGH TORS are coming "UP-OFF-IN" the COUGARS' DEN in August!!!!!!!!
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That is a badddd thing! It's a bad thing because "WE WILL PROTECT OUR HOUSE!!!"
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Now, I'm a pretty fair guy, so here is what I'm going to do. I'm going to petition "JACK" to take that All-State Running Back out in the third quarter to hold the score down.
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Now, as for the next week after,......none other than the "BATTLE By The Bay!"
The twins are gone, Mr. Lynch is gone, and Mr, Allen is gone! However Mr. Cooper is still reeking havoc on Cougar Ave. Mr. Jones is still there, and Mr. Ellis-Jones i.e. "THAT FRESHMAN" is going to tear up the state this year!

P.S.
I want to caution the Cougars that none other than Coach Kory Mangum, High School All-American when he played for the LM Cougars, is the secondary coach for BALL HIGH! This coach started for the Florida State Seminoles one of the BEST FOOTBALL programs in the country, and he knows his stuff! Coach Anders, was one of the best to come this way for BALL HIGH, and went on and proved it with the Houston Cougars, and the Kansas City Chiefs! They will be out to upset the LM Cougars, in August, and WE ARE NOT HAIVING IT!!!!!
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I will be there with my entourage and when we go to TC I'm subject to be the designated quarterback club Rep, if I can work things out! We will be coming in there to serve notice to the rest of the state. We are going to give Dr. Jack something to wear on his finger before he leaves here! That's all I know!!!!!!![smile]

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