Three Point Stance: What to watch for this season

Published 2:00 pm Sunday, August 7, 2022

In this edition of the Three Point Stance, staff writers Rodrick Anderson and Warren Arceneaux discuss the upcoming high school football season.

What topic are you most interested in about the upcoming season?

WA: Progress at schools that sat out the 2020 season but played last year. None of those schools — Barbe, Sam Houston, Washington-Marion, LaGrange and Elton — made the playoffs last season, but should make progress this year.

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RA: How Grand Lake and Kinder will handle moving up a class. Grand Lake is making the jump from 1A to 2A just as the Hornets were starting to find consistent success with a state runner-up finish in 2020 and a quarterfinals appearance last season. Kinder was the area’s most successful 2A team of late, with two state titles and two runners-up since 2013, but now must adjust to the highly competitive District 3-3A. Both teams have plenty of returning starters on both sides of the ball to help them quickly become contenders.

Which large schools team is most interesting?

WA: Westlake took a big step forward last year, going from no wins to seven. The Rams return a big-time player at each level of defense in lineman Jaquaylon Pettiway, linebacker Ethan Koonce and defensive back Kristian Ozane. The offense features playmakers in running back Brandon Jupiter and receiver Tristan Goodly.

RA: After it was picked near the bottom of District 3-5A last season, Sulphur exceeded expectations by placing third in the district. The Tors have a solid nucleus coming back, including quarterback Gage Trahan, wide receiver Kaden Blalock and six of their seven top tacklers from last year, including linebacker Corey Hyatt, safety Tyler Massey and linemen Keagan Trimm and Blayden Laidlaw.

Which small schools team is most intriguing?

WA: Hamilton Christian is bringing in a new coach and a new style of offense with Coach Ragan McDaniel and his Air Raid offense. It’ll be quite the change in District 4-1A, which otherwise features veer and power-running teams.

RA: Despite losing two-sport star quarterback Ethan Frey (LSU) to graduation, Rosepine returns a host of all-district players as they look to continue the success they had in their 10-win 2021 campaign. Prolific running back Grant Ducote returns along with wide receiver Isiah Stinson, offensive lineman Lane Willis and linebacker Michael Woods. Jake Smith will take over at quarterback.