Class 5A - Week 1 - 2014

Class 5A - Week 1 - 2014

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Hootens.com Rankings
Class 5A, Week 1, 2014
Copyright Hooten Publishing, Inc.

1. Wynne
2. Pulaski Academy
3. Camden Fairview
4. Batesville
5. Greenbrier
6. Hope
7. Sylvan Hills
8. White Hall
9. Beebe
10. Morrilton
11. Mills
12. Watson Chapel
13. Harrison
14. Forrest City
15. Magnolia
16. LR Christian
17. Nettleton
18. Vilonia
19. HS Lakeside
20. Jacksonville
21. Greene Co. Tech
22. Valley View
23. Maumelle
24. Hot Springs
25. Clarksville
26. LR McClellan
27. Paragould
28. De Queen
29. Farmington
30. Blytheville
31. LR Fair
32. North Pulaski

HOOTENS.COM GAME OF THE WEEK
Nashville at No. 6 Hope

Hope's 14-point triumph last year snapped a seven-game losing streak in the series. Hope parlayed the victory into 10 wins, a conference title and semifinal appearance. The Bobcats enjoyed a productive summer as sophomore Austin Stubber (6-2, 200) won the quarterback spot, allowing Steven Caple to play receiver. "Caple (4.6 speed) is going to surprise," Hope coach Jay Turley says. "We've got to find ways to get him the ball." Junior Corey Haynes (5-10, 150) didn't play last year but won the running back position in August. Hope has one of the better defensive fronts in Class 5A, with junior end McTelvin Agim (6-3, 250) and senior noseguard Kadarius Rowe (6-3, 325). Agim racked up 77 tackles last year and "we haven't blocked Rowe yet," Turley says.

Nashville views this game as a stepping stone toward the 7-4A title. The Scrappers won just six games last year and failed to advance in the playoffs for the first time in 20 years. Senior Lucas Liggin (5-10, 190) shores up the defense at linebacker after starting at QB last season. Junior Leonard Snell (5-10, 160) shifts from defense to QB "and makes them a lot more mobile," Turley says. Nashville senior receiver LaMichael Pettway (6-3, 200) committed to Ole Miss in the spring. Pettway caught 56 passes for 1,056 yards and 15 TDs and ran for 263 yards and two scores last fall.

TV SHOW
Hooten's Arkansas Football TV show airs 10::30 a.m. Saturdays this fall on KATV 7 (ABC-Little Rock) and KXNW (Ch. 34 Fort Smith/Fayetteville. The show features the state's top recruiting prospects.

LAST YEAR
Hootens.com correctly predicted 175 of 211 games (83 percent) last season.

WEEK 1 PREDICTIONS (favored team in ALL CAPS followed by point spread)
5A CENTRAL
Pulaski Academy at HIGHLAND PARK (TEXAS) (1): The Highland Park Scots move up to Texas' highest classification this year. They return senior quarterback Brooks Burgin (3,497 yards and 31 TDs last year). Pulaski Academy beat Memphis University School by eight points in last year's opener, then MUS marched to the Tennessee private school championship game.
SYLVAN HILLS (8) at Vilonia: The Bears' 15-point win over Vilonia last year snapped a three-game losing streak in the series. Sylvan Hills returns senior QB Tra Doss (2,200 yards, 23 TDs last year). Vilonia operated in the Double Wing scheme most of the summer.
Beebe at GREENBRIER (7) (Tue.): Greenbrier has won four straight over Beebe, including the past two by a combined 96-38. Beebe junior fullback Tripp Smith ran for 1,938 yards and 25 TDs last year. Greenbrier QB's Will Drewry and Harold Ross combined for 3,059 yards and 29 TDs in 2013.
Maumelle at JACKSONVILLE (2): Jacksonville ditches longtime rival Cabot as its season-opener in favor of the Hornets, whom it beat 27-20 Week 3 last season. Former Red Devil assistant Barry Hickingbotham took over as head coach in May.
Mills at LR PARKVIEW (1): LR Parkview has beaten the Comets two of the past three seasons and four of the past seven in the series. Sophomore QB Koilan Jackson led the Patriots to a playoff win at Texarkana last November after helping the freshman team to an 8-1 record.
LR McClellan at SHERIDAN (6): LR McClellan has won eight games over the past seven seasons. Sheridan should improve in 2013 with junior QB Dustin Reid (800 yards in 2013) and receiver Brady Bibb (200 yards).
LR FAIR (1) at Subiaco Academy: These teams combined for four wins last season.
North Pulaski at LR HALL (1): LR Hall hasn't won a game since 2011. North Pulaski has won once the past three years.

5A EAST
BATESVILLE (4) at Watson Chapel: Batesville has played in three straight state title games. Pioneer senior QB Kenton Crawford (6-3, 190) passed for 1,303 yards and eight TDs and ran for 759 yards and 13 scores last season. Former junior high coach Jared Dutton took over at Watson Chapel in late May, succeeding George Shelton (43-27-1 record).
Marion at WYNNE (7): These teams have split the past four meetings. Wynne senior and Cincinnati commit Ross Trail takes over at QB after playing for Olive Branch, Miss., last season. Marion first-year coach Jed Davis installed a Spread offense in the spring.
Forrest City at WEST MEMPHIS (6): Forrest City won seven games last season but missed the playoffs after a one-point loss to Wynne in October. The Mustangs rely on a salty defense line this fall, including senior tackle Kevin Jones (6-1, 306) and junior end/tackle Justin Bailey (5-11, 240). Former Glen Rose and Stuttgart coach Billy Elmore takes over at West Memphis, succeeding Lanny Dauksch (116-41-1 record).
Nettleton at NEWPORT (2): Newport beat the Raiders by 21 points in last year's opener. Newport junior Carl Turner rushed for 2,747 yards the past two seasons.
Valley View at JONESBORO (24): Valley View steps up to Class 5A this year after advancing to the Class 4A semifinals last fall, in just its eighth varsity season. Former assistant Sean Cockrell takes over as the Blazer's new coach. Jonesboro coach Randy Coleman launched Valley View's program in 204. The Hurricane return eight starters on defense this fall, including senior linebacker Aaron Fitts (team-high 120 tackles in 2013).
Greene County Tech at SEARCY (6): Greene County Tech won just two games last season, its worst mark since going winless in 2007. Former Eagle coach Jeff Conaway took over at Shiloh Christian in the summer. Don Simmons took over at GCT in the late June. Simmons coached at Shawnee (Kansas) Misson North and Chanute (Kansas) the past 10 years. Simmons, a 30-year coaching veteran, took his team's to the playoffs 19 times in his career, including two state championships.
RIVERCREST (7) at Paragould: Rivercrest returns starters at 16 positions, including running back Cecil Langston (843 yards and 10 TDs in 2013). Paragould senior Dylan Hoggard ran for more than 1,000 yards each of the past two seasons.
OSCEOLA (1) at Blytheville: Osceola's 18-point win last season was its first in the series since 2005. Ben Fischer served as Blytheville's interim coach last season and took over the program in the winter. Blytheville has won just four games the past two years.

5A SOUTH
HS LAKESIDE (1) vs. Lincoln (Mon.): The teams battle in the first game of the season at Razorback Stadium during Hootens.com Kickoff Week. Hot Springs Lakeside won just three games last season after combining for 22 victories the previous three seasons. Senior Clint Smedley takes over at QB after transforming into an all-state receiver (31 catches, 600 yards) in 2013. Former Arkansas Razorback Scott Davenport takes over at Lincoln. Davenport previously assisted at Class 7A Rogers Heritage. Watch highlights of HS Lakeside's victory over Lincoln in the Hootens.com Kickoff Classic at Razorback Stadium here.
Nashville at HOPE (1): Hootens.com Class 5A Game of the Week.
Camden Fairview at EL DORADO (10): These teams have combined for five state titles the past five seasons. Camden Fairview's expected starter at running back moved to Little Rock in the summer. The Cardinals need production from receiver Cornelius Page (51 catches for 723 yards and seven TDs in 2013.
Van Buren at WHITE HALL (2): White Hall has won at least eight games four of the past five seasons. Bulldog senior QB Kirk Baugh generated more than 2,700 yards last season. Van Buren has won just six games the past three years.
BATESVILLE (4) at Watson Chapel: Batesville has played in three straight state title games. Pioneer senior QB Kenton Crawford (6-3, 190) passed for 1,303 yards and eight TDs and ran for 759 yards and 13 scores last season. Former junior high coach Jared Dutton took over at Watson Chapel in late May, succeeding George Shelton (43-27-1 record).
MAGNOLIA (3) at Crossett: Crossett has beaten Magnolia two straight seasons, including last fall's one-point thriller when Magnolia committed five turnovers. Panther senior Justin Dockery ran for 128 yards and a TD last year against Crossett, but he broke his leg the next week and hasn't taken a varsity snap since.
LAKE HAMILTON (17) at Hot Springs: These teams haven't played since 1999. Lake Hamilton should run the ball effectively this fall with four returning linemen, including all-6A South tackles Josh Graves (6-0, 260) and Hunter Wallace (6-2, 245).
MENA (2) at DeQueen: Mena dumped De Queen by 14-11 last season. The Leopards have won just 10 games the past four seasons. Mena senior QB Sage Kesterson threw for almost 2,300 yards a year ago.

5A WEST
Morrilton at RUSSELLVILLE (7): Russellville has beaten Morrilton seven of the past eight seasons, including a 15-point triumph last fall. Defending Class 5A champ Morrilton returns linebackers Trey Blakley (86 tackles in 2013) and Cyrus McKaskle.
Beebe at GREENBRIER (7) (Tue.): Greenbrier has won four straight over Beebe, including the past two by a combined 96-38. Beebe junior fullback Tripp Smith ran for 1,938 yards and 25 TDs last year. Greenbrier QB's Will Drewry and Harold Ross combined for 3,059 yards and 29 TDs in 2013.
Mountain Home at HARRISON (8): Harrison has won five of the past eight in the series, including a 37-point bombing last fall. Mountain Home enters with a 20-game losing streak. First-year coach David Joyce led Colorado Springs (Doherty), Colo., to eight wins last fall.
SYLVAN HILLS (8) at Vilonia: The Bears' 15-point win over Vilonia last year snapped a three-game losing streak in the series. Sylvan Hills returns senior QB Tra Doss (2,200 yards, 23 TDs last year). Vilonia operated in the Double Wing.
Farmington at PRAIRIE GROVE (7): These teams have split the past eight meetings, but they are no longer part of the same conference after Farmington bumps to Class 5A. Farmington junior Justice Hobbs ran for 905 yards last year. Prairie Grove senior running back Bobby Catt generated almost 1,000 yards last season, and junior tight end Dylan Soehner (6-6, 265) could develop into a Division I prospect.e Wing scheme most of the summer.
LR CHRISTIAN (10) at Fountain Lake: LR Christian expectations explode this fall after hiring former Camden Fairview coach Buck James as an assistant in the spring. Former Camden Fairview running back Damarea Crockett (696 yards, 13 TDs in 2013) moved to LR Christian in the summer. Fountain Lake bumps to Class 4A after winning 62 games and a state title in Class 3A the past six seasons.
Maumelle at JACKSONVILLE (2): Jacksonville ditches longtime rival Cabot as its season-opener in favor of the Hornets, whom it beat 27-20 Week 3 last season. Former Red Devil assistant Barry Hickingbotham took over as head coach in May.
LAMAR (7) at Clarksville: The Battle of Highway 64. Lamar features a stellar defensive line and linebacker corps. Senior QB Braxton Sampley returns after passing for 2,433 yards and 32 TDs in 2013. Clarksville lost to 4-3A member Charleston 42-19 in last year's opener. Six weeks later, Lamar lost to Charleston 31-6.

 

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