This is not a typical host school pool, Burnet is not shy about putting some strong teams in their pool. Burnet who qualified for the State Tournament last year is led by RB Darius Nesby. Nesby is a big play threat but the rest of the Bulldogs are a bit young and inexperienced. Belton is extremely young but the Tigers are extremely athletic, led by RB Keith Daniels and WR Khiry Robinson. Keep an eye on Belton as a possible sleeper. Lampasas makes the short trip down 281, and the Badgers are a bit inexperienced in SQT play. LHS doesn't have the athletes as some of the other teams in this pool and they may struggle. LHS' top threat is WR Jarrod Bowen. Copperas Cove was rained out last week in Granbury and they were a late addition to this field, the Bulldawgs are led by sensational QB Robert Griffin who has gotten rave reviews this spring. Despite CCHS's recent struggles in early SQT play I expect Cove to edge out of a very tough pool.
Little Matt's Pick: Copperas Cove
Lake Travis* (can not advance past pool play)
The headliner of this pool qualified last week at the Round Rock SQT, as Lake Travis will be unable to advance past pool play. However checking out sensational junior QB Garrett Gilbert is worth the drive. Lago Vista stunned the field last year at this SQT by advancing all the way to the semi-finals before host Burnet dispatched the feisty Vikings. LVHS lost a solid senior crew and they may have difficulty repeating that feat this year. Marble Falls which is Burnet's neighbor to the south, doesn't have many returning offensive weapons but watch out for junior LB Thor Woerner and DB Tommy Beltron. Cedar Park on paper will have the best collection of talent in this pool, but can the Wolves put it together and make their first real push at a State Tourney berth? I think their talent alone gets them to the semi-finals and hey in a one game scenario in 7 on 7 anything can happen so maybe CPHS can make some noise?
Little Matt's Pick: Cedar Park
This pool is where things start to get interesting, Round Rock hosted their own SQT last week but failed to advance out of pool play. The Dragons may have had their best shot to qualify last year when they had some strong receivers, I don't expect them to advance out of pool play this week. Georgetown had to wait to qualify last year until the Brownwood SQT, the Eagles do have QB Morgan Mickham who is solid and some athletic DB's. Dripping Springs a couple of years ago was considered a strong 7 on 7 squad but the Tigers fell off a bit last year. The Tigers are young this year and may take some lumps in a tough pool. Once a big player in the state 7 on 7 scene Waco Midway has limited themselves to one SQT a year and this will be their one shot. The Panthers are led by DB Germaine Gilbert and WR Matt Davis. I think this pool comes down to Waco Midway and Georgetown, and I'll take Midway in a bit of an upset.
Little Matt's Pick: Waco Midway
Round Rock Westwood
Round Rock Stony Point
This will be the best pool by far to watch in this SQT, Westwood advanced to the semi-finals last week at Round Rock before being knocked off by Brenham. The Warriors should be at full strength this week and they'll be a threat as they have shown they can compete on a statewide level in 7 on 7 after a good showing at the state tournament last year. Stony Point will feature some very good athletes but how well will they do in 7 on 7? SPHS is a relative unknown at the SQT level and newcomers usually struggle in early SQT play. Stephenville like Copperas Cove was a last minute entry in the SQT, but the Yellow Jackets have no shortage of big time performers after advancing to the Quarter-Finals of the State Tournament last year. SHS is led by QB Kody Spano and DB Cody Davis both of whom are Big 12 recruits. Buda Hays advanced to the state tournament in 2005 and they usually will feature some strong athletes, but the Rebels will be young overall. Keep an eye on WR Clayton Rogers. Look for a war between Stephenville and RR Westwood for rights to advance, and I'll take Stephenville with their big time QB.
Little Matt's Pick: Stephenville
Copperas Cove vs. Cedar Park
I think whoever wins Pool A will roll into a State Tournament berth and I think late entry Copperas Cove gets that luxury as Pool B looks to be pretty weak.
Waco Midway vs. Stephenville
In what will be a preview of the team's Week Zero match-up at Waco ISD Stadium, I think Stephenville makes an early statement and secures themselves a berth in College Station. I expect this to be an excellent match-up with lots of points put up.
Copperas Cove vs. Stephenville
In the always anti-climactic championship game, there will be some irony as neither team on Thursday was even scheduled to play in this SQT!!! I'll go with Stephenville just to be a DFW homer, but the Bulldawgs athleticism will give Stephenville problems.