Central Texas District Analysis: 13-5A

It has been a strange year for District 13-5A as none of the teams in the district will enter league play with a winning record while Belton, Bryan, and Ellison are all heading into their district openers with .500 marks. There will be great battles for the four playoff spots as things look wide open with no one dominant team in the district.

It has been a strange year for District 13-5A as none of the teams in the district will enter league play with a winning record while Belton, Bryan, and Ellison are all heading into their district openers with .500 marks. There will be great battles for the four playoff spots as things look wide open with no one dominant team in the district.

BIGGEST SURPRISE: Temple
Belton had nowhere to go but up from an 0-10 season a year ago and with Rodney Southern taking over this season, it was almost a lock that the Tigers would improve. But it is really surprising to see how close Temple is to being 4-0 as they suffered close set backs and undefeated Round Rock McNeil, Round Rock Westwood, and Abilene Cooper. The move back to the Wing-T has helped the offense immensely and if the defense can come up with timely stops, they could be making a return trip to the playoffs.

BIGGEST DISSAPOINTMENT: A&M Consolidated
The Tigers were expected by some to take a step back after losing numerous Bowl Subdivision signees and they played one heck of a non-district schedule. The mere fact that the Tigers are 0-4 however is sill stunning, with losses coming to Pflugerville, Leander, Austin Westlake, all top ten teams in the area, and nationally ranked Katy.

BIGGEST UNKNOWN: Ellison
The preseason No. 1 team in the area has had some inconsistencies in the early goings in 2007. They were without Ivan Delgado in their season opening loss to Killeen, then got Delgado back and looked good in wins over Pflugerville Hendrickson and Pflugerville Connally. Then they suffered a 59-25 beat down at the hands of Round Rock Stony Point, their first game with Delgado, running back Michael Holloway, and receiver Jaron Turner all in the lineup at the same time. If they can put it all together, they have as much talent as anyone in the area.

PROJECTED DISTRICT CHAMPION: Bryan
Coach Bob Bellard's team does not have star power like some of the other teams in the area, but they have the biggest win of any team in the district so far with their 30-27 upset of DeSoto. Stan McGruder had a big game running the ball against the Eagles and seems to have become the offensive catalyst to go along with what is by far the best defense in the district.

BEST TEAM TO MISS THE POSTSEASON: Belton
The Tigers have plenty of talent and would be 3-1 had it not been for a late comeback by McNeil. As the league schedule plays out, it just might be revealed that they Tigers are better that either Harker Heights or Shoemaker.

DISTRICT MVP: Lache Seastrunk, RB, Temple
He is the current front runner for offensive newcomer of the year honors in Central Texas and if Temple makes the playoffs, he will have a lot to do with it as his home run ability has done wonders for the Wildcats offense. Ellison's Daniel Cobb is also very much in the mix.

COACH OF THE YEAR: Rodney Southern, Belton
Southern has shown this season that there is talent in Belton and he is winning and getting the most out of a team that has not won since Ramonce Taylor was wearing the Red & White.

GAME OF THE YEAR: Bryan 30, DeSoto 27 (Week 3)
It is the biggest won for the district thus far and had a thrilling finish. McGruder's big night was almost for not as the Eagles were driving late in the fourth quarter, but Bryan defender Jaron Gentry intercepted a pass near the goal line to preserve the victory.

JEFF'S THOUGHTS:
Bryan's win over DeSoto says so much because they rebounded after hard luck losses against Plfugerville and Leander. The Eagles had been rolling people and I think Bryan's victory makes them the team to beat. Hopefully Consol's tough schedule has them battle tested and not shaken because the book is not out on them by any means. If Ellison can get it together in time for the game with Bryan, that contest will decide the district title. I have Temple as the No. 4 team in the playoffs right now, and I have been surprised at how much improved they are and it will be interesting to see if they can hold off the other three teams in the league, all of whom have a shot to get in the playoffs.


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