I could kick myself. If I was a contortionist and could pull it off, I would do it.
Last week in this space, I said this about picking the Southlake Carroll-DeSoto playoff game: The reigning Class 6A Division II state champions have the talent to make another title run. But they’re a little more vulnerable in this rematch with the Dragons. Carroll’s chances will come down to it winning the line of scrimmage. Running back T.J. McDaniel doesn’t have to have the kind of day like he had against McKinney. But it wouldn’t hurt. Carroll can win this. I’m so tempted to pick the Dragons.
Prediction: DeSoto 34, Carroll 27
Final score: Carroll 33, DeSoto 15
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Arrrggghhh!!! It goes back to getting a strong gut feeling. But then, you out-think yourself, don’t trust your instincts and wind up making the safe pick. Then it turns out your instincts were right. You blew it.
Arrrggghhh!!! I blew it.
The nuclear winter forecast we had for round two of the postseason for our teams didn’t turn out that way. We knew we were losing one between Haslet V.R. Eaton and Colleyville Heritage. We lost Eaton.
Take Richland. The Rebels never led in their playoff game against Saginaw Boswell. Never. They then get it to overtime, score first and then run on the field to celebrate when Ja’cory Ashley comes up with the interception.
It takes one play for someone to change everything. Richland is playing a 13th game for the second time in school history when it meets El Paso Parkland Saturday in Lubbock.
With consecutive 10-2 seasons, the Rebels are enjoying the greatest two-year period in school history. They have a chance to reach the state quarterfinals and win an 11th game. That’s never happened.
So the teams we have remaining are Carroll, Richland, Colleyville Heritage and Euless Trinity.
By the way, we’re going to take credit for fueling the fire for Carroll and Trinity going on these deep playoff runs following our story in early October describing how both programs had seen slight dips in their success.
Without a doubt, those stories were read, printed and probably discussed and pinned on bulletin boards.
Anything we can do to help.
We have enough gift for gab for our four remaining games. So we’re going to give you more of this.
Last week: 4-3
Season: 109-29 (.790)
Richland (10-2) vs. El Paso Parkland (10-2); 1 p.m. Saturday, AT&T Jones Stadium, Lubbock; Class 5A Division II Region I semifinal: The 2017 Rebels are trying to make history by winning in this round. Richland’s defense has stepped up. A pick six against Saginaw Boswell stemmed the tide. In the playoffs, defense travels. The Rebels have one of the best in linebacker DaShaun White. This defense will get pushed by Parkland’s 1-2 combo of quarterback A.J. Briggs, who has thrown for more than 3,800 yards and 39 touchdowns, and running back Deion Hankins, who is pushing 2,000 yards. Odds are that Parkland hasn’t seen a physical defense like the Rebels.
Prediction: Richland 38, El Paso Parkland 32
Colleyville Heritage (11-1) vs. Lubbock Coronado (12-0); 1:30 Saturday; Wildcat Stadium, Abilene Christian University, Abilene; Class 5A Division I Region I semifinal: This is a rematch of last year’s semifinal that Colleyville Heritage won. The Panthers have been playing both Ke’Von Ahmad and Kam Brown at wide receiver and defensive back. Both are well over 1,000 receiving yards. Both have combined for eight of the Panthers’ 14 interceptions. Ahmad has six. Coronado has crossed 40 points or more in nine of 12 games. It also features two 1,000-yard receivers in junior Blair Conright and senior Devin Morrison. This is going to be about who gets the right stops. By the way, Wildcats Stadium made its debut in September. It seats 12,000 and should be a nice venue to watch the game.
Prediction: Colleyville Heritage 45, Lubbock Coronado 41
Euless Trinity (10-2) vs. Midland Lee (10-2); 4 p.m. Saturday; Shotwell Stadium, Abilene; Class 6A Division I Region I semifinal: The Trojans have walked the high wire in their first two playoff games but survived, 28-21 over Plano in overtime and 28-27 over Duncanville when the Panthers missed a 51-yard field goal at the gun. The Lee Rebels feature three, yes, three 1,000-yard rushers. So Trinity’s defense better find a way to get in gear and limit the damage. Arlington Lamar just fell a little short against Lee. The Haka needs to be in full force.
Prediction: Euless Trinity 44, Midland Lee 39
Carroll (9-3) vs. Arlington (10-2); 7 p.m. Saturday; Ford Center (The Star) Frisco; Class 6A Division II Region I semifinal: Both programs suffered through some early playoff frustrations in recent seasons. However, they finally have returned to making deep runs. Arlington coach Scott Peach has brought along quarterback D’Montae Davis to where he is a 1,500-yard passer and 1,200 yard rusher. Kenland McCray has surpassed 1,300 rushing yards. Carroll put together the right game plan for quarterback Will Bowers so he could beat Duncanville. The Colts and Dragons have a common opponent: Arlington Martin. Carroll lost to the Warriors, 50-33. Arlington lost to Martin, 28-14. This is a game where the defenses make their stand.
Prediction: Carroll 27, Arlington 20
Let’s win them all!