Warren Arceneaux column: Offensive explosion continues

Published 10:30 am Tuesday, September 21, 2021

After three weeks where there was a general happiness just to be playing football amid weather and pandemic concerns, it now feels like we are getting into the meat of the season this week with the onset of district play and Homecoming games.

Among the things we learned in the first third of the regular season is that the offensive explosion of recent seasons is not going away, particularly in the larger classes. Last week, the winning teams in games involving area Class 3A-5A teams averaged 40.2 points per game. Only one team won by scoring less than 28 points. Four scored 48 or more points.

It follows that teams now need more than one star on offense to produce enough points to win consistently, unlike the old days when a dominant running back could get 25-30 carries per game and carry a team to wins.

Most of the area’s five remaining undefeated teams follow the script with multiple playmakers on offense.

Iowa has scored at least 41 points in each of its three wins, with standouts Curtis Deville and Ronald Young combining to score 12 touchdowns. Each player has scored at least once in every game. Young has multiple touchdowns in every game while leading the team in rushing attempts (54), yards (401) and touchdowns (7). Deville is a Swiss army knife, with touchdowns rushing, receiving and on an 89-yard punt return. He has 16 carries for 245 yards and 3 touchdowns to go along with a team-leading 10 receptions and 157 receiving yards. Dual-threat quarterback Koltin LeBleu has produced 413 yards of offense and 7 touchdowns to give the Jackets another threat.

Washington-Marion has returned to play with a bang after sitting out last season. The Charging Indians have bounced back from a jamboree loss with wins over Northside and Peabody. Like Iowa, W-M has a workhorse running back in Derrick Paul and a jack-of-all-trades in Tyree Brown. Paul has run for 145 and 162 yards in the W-M wins and scored on three rushing and two receiving touchdowns. Brown leads the teams in receptions with five, has scored on a 5-yard run, set up a score with a long punt return and intercepted a pass on defense in his first two games of varsity football. Last year Brown led the W-M hoops team to a 12-game winning streak to close the season.

Westlake’s starting backfield of QB Jamaal Guillory and RB Brandon Jupiter are an ideal duo for the modern spread game, with Jupiter capable of running between the tackles and Guillory a big-play machine on the perimeter. So far they have combined for 787 yards and 12 touchdowns as the Rams have won three straight. Guillory has run for at least 140 yards and scored two touchdowns rushing in every game. Jupiter has games of 72, 128 and 152 yards with three touchdowns in each of the past two weeks. Guillory has also improved as a passer and has an elite talent at receiver in Tristan Goodly. The Rams have been dominant so far, outscoring opponents 114-37.

No area team has been more dominant than Rosepine, which features a stout defense paired with two of the area’s top individual talents in QB Ethan Frey and RB Grant Ducote.

Frey has completed an absurd 27 of 29 pass attempts for 477 yards and 7 touchdowns.

He has also run seven times for 66 yards and another touchdown. Those two, paired with a deep receiving corps and defense that has allowed points in only one game this season, have the Eagles flying high at 3-0 while outscoring foes 151-20.

Ducote has 11 touchdowns on only 26 carries and is averaging 15.6 yards per carry.

Grand Lake (3-0) is the most old-school of the area’s quintet of undefeated teams. The Hornets have done it with defense, allowing only 21 points through three weeks. QB Connor Guillotte is adding more balance to the Hornets offense, with 200 passing yards and four touchdown passes through the first two games.

Among other teams, some of the other dynamic duos include Barbe RB Tylan Ceasar and WR Jamaal Levi (combined 987 yards of offense, 12 touchdowns), LCCP RBs TreVonte’ Citizen and Devonte Guidroz (742 yards, 10 TDs), St. Louis WRs Grant Evans and Marcus Duhon (463 yards, 5 TDs combined) and Welsh QB Gabe Gillet and RB Cohen Fontenot (687 rushing yards, 9 TDs).

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Warren Arceneaux covers high school athletics. Email him at warren.arceneaux@americanpress.com