Small School Race Begins

Let's talk – before the trophies are awarded – about the possible winners at this weekend's Fox Sports Southwest 7-on-7 Division II State Championship for a minute.

Even with a plethora of proven talent in the 32-team field playing Thursday and Friday, I'm tempted to pick my top six teams a bit before the first football is thrown at Penberthy Fields on the Texas A&M campus Thursday. I confess some of my choices are based on tradition, some on talent and some on hunches.

The odds of Brownwood (Pool A), Celina (B), Graham (D), Abilene Wylie (G), Burnet (C) and Carthage (F) controlling their pool play is very good. Based on 7-on-7 traditions, Celina and Brownwood may be on a collision course for Friday. The winner could rule the division II roost completely.

Pool matchups to watch carefully on Thursday include:
Brownwood-Rice Consolidated at 2 p.m.
Bandera-Celina at 1 p.m.
Carthage-Wills Point at 2 p.m.
Graham-Cameron at 2 p.m.

I'm up in the air about Pool E with Gatesville, Pilot Point, Marion and Goldthwaite. All are good teams, but which takes control? This will be a pool to watch. Pool G with Abilene Wylie, Hardin-Jefferson, Palestine Westwood and Navasota could also be very competitive.

Single-elimination play begins Friday morning at 8 a.m. The consolation final is tentatively scheduled at Kyle Field at noon Friday with the championship small school final planned for 1 p.m. Those times, however, could be adjusted.

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