The 2021 Texas High School football season has flown by and we are already less than one week away from the first UIL Football State Championship games. While some teams in the state have already punched their ticket to the state game (including 1A Strawn and 2A Brock), there are still eight DFW-area teams that are vying for their chance to play at Jerry World! VYPE DFW breaks down this week’s semifinal games.
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Mansfield Summit vs. College Station
Mansfield Summit Football
Mansfield Summit vs. College Station - Friday, December 10 at 7 p.m.
Mansfield Summit Jaguars (11-3, 6-1)
The Jaguars have posted a great season so far finishing as the District 4-5A Division I runner-up (just behind Colleyville Heritage). The team has played hard all season and continues to push their way through playoffs beating Azle, El Paso Chapin, Midlothian, and Colleyville Heritage en route to the state semifinal game.
Orlando Scales is the man to watch in this matchup. Scales leads the Jags in rushing with nearly 1,200 rushing yards and nine touchdowns. Keon Hobbs has also played strong this season with 1,112 rushing yards and 14 touchdowns to his name.
College Station Cougars (14-0, 8-0)
Coming into the semifinals undefeated, the Cougars are ready to call it a win and move on to the state title game. College Station is no stranger to taking down DFW teams in the playoffs. This season they defeated McKinney North, Frisco Lone Star, Frisco Wakeland, and Denton Ryan en route to the semifinals. They look to add another DFW team to their list on Friday.
College Station has a handful of amazing players that you're going to want to keep your eyes on including quarterback Jett Huff who has thrown for nearly 2,800 yards with 41 touchdowns. Another Cougar athlete who will likely have a big game on Friday is Marquise Collins who has run for 2,383 yards and 34 touchdowns this season.
What To Expect:
A hard fought game, plain and simple. Although the Jags have been amazing on their feet all season- especially in the playoffs- they are going to have to switch it up if they want their offense to keep up with College Station's offense. However, this game is going to come down to defense. Whichever defense can get the most big stops early will likely be the one to head to the state title game!
South Oak Cliff vs. Lubbock Cooper
South Oak Cliff Football
South Oak Cliff vs. Lubbock Cooper - Friday, December 10 at 7 p.m.
South Oak Cliff Bears (13-1, 8-0)
Undefeated in regular season play, South Oak Cliff has had a historical season. The Bears have made it to the state semifinals for the first time since 1970 and they are not ready to slow down. Their only loss the entire season has been against Duncanville- another team vying for a spot in the state championships. In playoffs, South Oak Cliff has posted big wins over the likes of Everman, Frisco, reigning state champions Aledo, and previously undefeated Lovejoy.
Missouri state pledge and senior quarterback Kevin Henry-Jennings has completed 66% of his passes this season and remains as one of the area's top passers. Henry-Jennings has thrown 34 touchdowns while tallying 2,649 passing yards; he also has eight rushing touchdowns to his name. The offense also has great stars in Ke'Undrae Hollywood and Qualon Farrar. Hollywood has recorded 16 touchdowns on just over 1,000 rushing yards while Farrar has recorded 14 touchdowns on 944 rushing yards.
Lubbock Cooper Pirates (13-1, 5-0)
Also posting an undefeated season, Lubbock Cooper is looking to continue their excellence in the post-season. The Pirates have posted big wins in the playoffs over Fort Worth Southwest, El Paso Parkland, Grapevine, and Wichita Falls Rider.
With two big-time linebackers leading the defense, Cooper has been a force to be reckoned with for any opposing offense. Texas pledge Kobie McKinzie and Baylor pledge Kyler Jordan can be expected to do everything they can to get South Oak Cliff down early. The offense has also played strong, posting big games throughout the season.
What To Expect:
If South Oak Cliff can figure out how to get passed Lubbock Cooper's defense, they are going to put on an absolute show. The team is hungry to show what they are capable of and they aren't going to let anyone stand in the way of them and their historical season!
Stephenville vs. Wichita Falls Hirschi
Stephenville vs. Wichita Falls Hirschi - Friday, December 10 at 7 p.m.
Stephenville Yellow Jackets (14-0, 5-0)
With an undefeated season thus far, the Yellow Jackets have been unstoppable! The team has allowed only one opposing team to score more than three touchdowns against them this season. During the playoffs, Stephenville has had great wins over the likes of Fort Worth Dunbar, Paris, Argyle, and Melissa.
Fans are going to want to keep their eyes on junior quarterback Ryder Lambert. Lambert has tallied 47 touchdowns this season while recording 3,790 passing yards. Lambert also has 10 rushing touchdowns to his name with 757 rushing yards.
Wichita Falls Hirschi Huskies (12-2, 5-0)
Despite a rough start to their season, the Huskies ended up going undefeated in district play to post a first-place finish in their district. The team comes into the state semifinals on a 12 game winning streak and looks to continue their excellence on through to the state title game. Defeating the likes of Pampa, Clint, Dumas, and Springtown in the playoffs, the Huskies are ready to give it their all in the semifinals.
Hirschi has a slew of key players ranging from quarterback duo Jimmell McFalls and Terrius Causey to Amarion Peterson who has nearly 1,800 rushing yards with 27 touchdowns. The Huskies have proven that not only can they be reliable passers, but they can be reliable on their feet.
What To Expect:
The Huskies are going to want to shut down Stephenville on Friday. Although Stephenville has shown incredible talent all season long, they are going to have to amp up their defense in order to stop Hirschi not only on their feet, but also through the air. This is bound to be a physical matchup!
Celina vs. Gilmore
Celina vs. Gilmer - Friday, December 10 at 7 p.m.
Celina Bobcats (12-1, 5-0)
With their only regular season loss coming against a strong Argyle team, Celina is prepared to use the rest of this season to put their names on the map. Posting a District 4-4A championship season, the Bobcats have won 10-straight games en route to the state semifinals including playoff wins against Mineral Wells, Perryton, Snyder, and Aubrey.
Celina has key players everywhere you look. There's running back Troy Peterson who has scored five touchdowns in the playoffs while running back Gabe Gayton has posted 100+ yard games in six games for a season total of 1,643 rushing yards. Quarterback Noah Bentley has completed 60% of his passes while tallying 33 touchdown passes.
Gilmer Buckeyes (13-1, 5-0)
On an nine-game winning streak, Gilmer has also posted an incredible season so far. The Buckeyes became the District 8-4A champions and went on to defeat Mexia, Caddo Mills, Van, and Texarkana Pleasant Grove in the playoffs. As last season's state runner-ups, the Buckeyes are ready to get back to the state title game and walk away from a season with a title!
Three-star quarterback and UTSA commit Brandon Tennison has thrown for nearly 3,500 yards this season and 35 touchdowns. Tennison has completed 71% of his passes and has thrown 15 touchdowns in just the last three games. He is THE guy to watch on the field against Celina on Friday night.
What To Expect:
Offense. Offense. Offense. Both teams have had great offensive seasons so far. There's no doubt that we are going to see fast scoring and high scoring in this game. Gilmer is looking to take it all this season, but Celina isn't quite out. If Celina's defense can step in and put a stop to Tennison, they stand a chance of punching their ticket to the state title game!
Gunter vs. Lubbock Roosevelt
Gunter vs. Lubbock Roosevelt - Friday, December 10 at 7:00 p.m.
Gunter Tigers (14-0, 6-0)
Undefeated on the season, Gunter has posted 14-straight wins and finished first in their district. In the playoffs, the Tigers have posted big wins over the likes of Scurry-Rosser, Millsap, Dublin, and Holliday. The team is looking to continue a great season in the semifinals on Friday.
All eyes should be kept on quarterback Hut Graham who has been consistent in the pocket. The defense is also strong with this season's squad. Holding their opponents to 142 total points against them all season, the defense has stepped up and made big plays whenever necessary to continue on a dominant run.
Lubbock Roosevelt Eagles (14-0, 5-0)
The Eagles are also on an undefeated run this season after finishing first in their district. Posting incredible wins through the regular season, Lubbock Roosevelt continued their excellence into the playoffs with wins over Spearman, Alpine, Brady, and Abernathy.
The star to watch for the Eagles is quarterback Alex Trevino. He has completed 50% of his passes this season, but he is a real threat on his feet having tallies 33 rushing touchdowns on 1,878 rushing yards. When Trevino isn't running the ball, Nathaniel Gensler is. Gensler has scored 19 touchdowns this season on 1,400 rushing yards.
What To Expect:
Strong defense. Defense wins championships afterall, right? Both teams have an incredible defense that has faced off against some of the best in the state. The true test will be which offense can score and remain consistent against the other's defense!
Southlake Carroll vs. Duncanville
Neena Sidhu (VYPEU - VYPE Media)
Southlake Carroll vs. Duncanville - Saturday, December 11 at 4 p.m.
Southlake Carroll Dragons (14-0, 6-0)
The Dragons are proving themselves this season after losing Quinn Ewers early to college. Although some had their doubts, Kaden Anderson has stepped into the quarterback role seamlessly and has helped lead the Dragons to another successful season. After becoming the District 4-6A champions, Southlake Carroll went on to defeat North Crowley, Midland Legacy, Lewisville, and Allen in the playoffs in order to get to the state semifinals.
Anderson has had a great season so far while completing 60% of his passes. The junior quarterback has tallied 34 touchdowns with 2,797 passing yards. Another star player for the Dragons is Owen Allen who has been at the top of his game for two seasons now. Allen leads Southlake with 2,114 rushing yards and 32 touchdowns. RJ Maryland and Landon Samson are also forces on the Dragons' offense that are going to be tough to stop on Saturday.
Duncanville Panthers (12-1, 7-0)
The Panthers are coming into the state semifinals with their only loss against a nationally ranked Mater Dei. The team won their district title and went on to post an incredible playoff run with wins over Belton, Mesquite, Spring, and DeSoto. The team is looking to continue to stay strong with a statement win against Southlake Carroll.
The guy to watch on the offense is senior running back Malachi Medlock. Medlock has posted 24 touchdowns with 1,556 rushing yards. However, the biggest threat on the Duncanville team is their star-studded defense. Duncanville has held their opponents to an average of 12 points per game with excellent plays by five-star Omari Abor, four-star Deldrick Madison, and three-star Jordan Crook.
What To Expect:
Both teams have had a great season. This is a rematch game of last season and there is no doubt that Duncanville wants the chance to post a statement win over Southlake Caroll this year. Fans can expect Duncanville's defense to put up the biggest challenge that the Dragons have seen all season.
Denton Guyer vs. Tomball
Neena Sidhu (VYPEU - VYPE Media)
Denton Guyer vs. Tomball - Saturday, December 11 at 7 p.m.
Denton Guyer Wildcats (13-1, 5-1)
The Wildcats started their season off with a bang and continue to show their strengths as they work their way through the post-season. Finishing in a first-place tie for their district title with Allen, the Wildcats have not been a team to slow down in the playoffs. Denton Guyer has posted great playoff wins over the likes of Flower Mound, Jesuit, Trophy Club Byron Nelson, and Prosper en route to the state semifinals.
Jackson Arnold has been the star of the show for Denton Guyer as the starting quarterback. So far in his senior season, Arnold has thrown 30 touchdowns while recording 3,611 passing yards and completing 66% of his passes. Arnold isn't Guyer's only weapon, though. Grayson O'Bara and Byron Phillips have both been incredible this season. O'Bara has posted four 100+ yard games while Phillips leads in rushing with 788 yards and 12 touchdowns.
Tomball Cougars (11-3, 3-3)
Tomball has had an interesting season. Although their regular season was a roller-coaster of sorts, they have been able to post big wins in the playoffs over the likes of Cypress Park, Willis, an incredibly strong Rockwall-Heath, and Cypress Bridgeland. The team is trying to continue to prove all of their naysayers wrong as they get ready to square up against one of the best teams in the state in an all-or-nothing game.
Fans will want to watch quarterback Cale Hellums who has nearly 2,000 passing yards and 22 passing touchdowns. Hellums has also posted 16 rushing touchdowns with 1,775 rushing yards. Another strong player to watch will be Christian Womack who has been strong on his feet for the Cougars.
What To Expect:
Guyer isn't going to let anyone stop them or stand in their way when it comes to capping off their season with a state title win. Although this game might be hard-fought for Tomball, Arnold is hungry for a state title in his senior season and his work ethic has shown nothing less.