The fun begins as 30-4A football kicks off Friday
Sept. 27, 2012 at 4:27 a.m.
From here on, there won't be any more easy victories.
Everyone in District 30-4A is too competitive, and the contrasting styles of play will dictate that lapses in concentration will be punished. At least, that is the prevailing belief from the seven coaches in the reconfigured district.
"It's a tough district," said Tuloso-Midway football coach Brian Boone. "You're talking about some powerhouses in here. I've talked to the district coaches in meetings that we've had. There is not a week off. There is a not a week that anyone can skip over."
Two teams are undefeated in Calhoun and Gregory-Portland. Victoria East is off to a surprising 1-3 start under new head coach Roland Gonzalez. Calallen, the perennial power, has sustained a hiccup. Meanwhile, the two bottom-feeders from 2011, Victoria West (3-1) and Boone's Warriors (2-2), enter district play with momentum.
Then, there is a 2-2 Beeville team that can give any of them a loss if they aren't ready to face the Trojans slot-T offense.
Despite the predictions and prognostications everything might depend on one football game down in Port Lavaca Friday night. In each of the last two seasons Calhoun's district opener has decided the 30-4A championship.
This year, the Sandcrabs open with Calallen, and it's entirely probable that game might determine the district crown - even if Calhoun head coach Richard Whitaker said his team is more focused on the task at hand.
"I don't know if anyone is going to run away with things," said Corpus Christi Carroll head coach Tony Trevino. "There is too much competition in that district."
Trevino might know better than anyone. His Tigers played Calhoun, Gregory-Portland and Calallen in its non-district schedule, losing all three contests. Carroll's second-year coach said the three favorites in 30-4A all run the football, but in different ways.
Trevino said Calhoun "will make you play sound gap-control defense. If not their option and misdirection will put you in a bind. There are several that will touch the ball."
Gregory-Portland will use different formations, but its aim is the same: get the ball to Devin Bisby. In four games, the junior running back has run for 690 yards and 11 touchdowns.
Calallen, might be the most unique of the three teams Trevino said he faced.
On film, the Wildcats showed the spread offense, but operated out of the wing-T 70 percent of the time in their 41-0 win over Carroll last week.
"The common thread with all three is all three do an outstanding job of coaching their defenses to swarm to the football," Trevino said. "You're not going to get tackled by one. You're going to be tackled by two, three, four or five. The common thread is they are all extremely physical on defense."
The biggest challenge for defenses will be finding a way to stop the run. Five teams run the football 70 percent or more, while Calallen has reverted to its traditional offense.
Victoria East is the only team that has thrown the football more than 35 percent of the time. Despite the Titans record, few are counting them out. In the preseason coaches praised East for its plethora of athletes.
The seven coaches in the district were asked who they thought would be the four teams that will escape the six-week slog and qualify for the playoffs. Six were asked in the preseason, while Tuloso-Midway's Boone was asked this week.
Calallen (3-1) was named unanimously. Calhoun (3-0) and Gregory-Portland (4-0) received six votes. East earned three votes.
Gregory-Portland head coach Matt Anastasio said the team's goals are simple: win the district and play December football. They are goals that are probably shared throughout the district.
"The teams that play football in December get to practice more than anyone else," Anastasio said. "That's why those programs are better than anyone else, because they get to practice with pads on."