Normal Lake Level is 322.00 feet
above Mean Sea Level.
Current level for Cedar Creek Lake is:
82 degrees - top
80 degrees - bottom
Texas Football picks 1 local
team for playoffs
By Kerry Yancey
Monitor Staff Writer
CEDAR CREEK LAKE–The 50th anniversary edition of Dave Campbell’s Texas
Football magazine contains a lot of looking back with its traditional
look ahead to the 2009 football season.
Long considered the Bible of Texas sportswriters, Texas Football is just
that – a comprehensive look at football across the state, from pros down
to the smallest private school.
Last year’s issue predicted a remarkably unsuccessful season for the
five Cedar Creek Lake area football teams, but that turned out to be a
rare error, as Mabank almost made the 4A playoffs and both Eustace and
Kemp broke decade-long playoff droughts.
Eustace fell in the bidistrict round to Nevada Community, but Kemp
knocked off Farmersville to advance to the area round of the playoffs,
while Trinidad made the playoffs again (as predicted), despite having
graduated almost everyone.
What does the magazine foresee for lake-area teams this year?
Texas Football again sees the Mabank Panthers finishing last in the
seven-team District 15-4A, primarily due to the fact the Panthers return
only two offensive starters, neither of them being MVP candidate Kolton
Browning’s departure to Louisiana-Monroe leaves a huge hole for
sixth-year head coach Jimmy Cantrell to fill at quarterback, and it’s
likely the Panther spread offense will emphasize running more than it
has in the past couple of years.
The Panthers do return eight starters on defense from last year’s 4-6
squad, and that may make them a threat in a district where only one
team, the West Mesquite Wranglers, return more than six starters on
Lancaster’s Tigers are picked to win the district, with West Mesquite,
Forney and Red Oak taking the other three playoff spots.
Lancaster has the district’s largest enrollment, almost double Mabank’s
enrollment, making it one of two Division I (big-school)
representatives, along with Forney.
The Tigers have six offensive and five defensive starters returning from
a 7-5 Division I area finalist squad.
Mabank’s defensive starters include linebacker Nolan Duncan, lineman
Spencer Endelman and linebacker Dustin Schultz, while center Dillon
Bramblitt, one of the strongest players in the district, will anchor the
Ask any area coach, and they’ll agree District 14-3A is the most
balanced district around.
Last year, Van established themselves early on as the class of the
district, going 5-0 while forging an 11-2 record and advancing to the
This year, the Vandals – and everybody else – will likely be better.
As noted earlier, the Eustace Bulldogs broke an 11-year playoff drought
last year, and Texas Football predicts the Bulldogs will claim the
district’s third-place playoff berth behind the Vandals and the Canton
That playoff pick shows how much change third-year head coach Doug
Wendel has made in the Eustace program, which forged just seven wins in
the three years before Wendel took over.
The Bulldogs return eight starters on both sides of the ball, including
an all-senior backfield – quarterback Chris Compton, fullback Shawn
Baldwin and speedy tailback Trevan Johnson, who qualified for the
regional track meet in five different events.
However, Wendel told the Eustace School Board Tuesday night he is more
excited about returnees “who don’t get their names in the paper.”
“We have eight or nine seniors who have been Bulldogs since they were in
kindergarten,” Wendel added.
At this point, it looks like the Week 7 matchup between the Bulldogs and
the Eagles in Canton might be one of the games of the year.
Last year’s Eagle squad included 18 sophomores, so they also have almost
Both teams combined for a memorable shoot-out in Eustace last year,
running up 984 offensive yards in a 35-26 Bulldogs win.
The Kemp Yellowjackets return five starters on offense and seven on
defense from last year’s 6-6 area finalist squad, which became the first
Kemp team to make the playoffs in 11 years.
However, the ’Jackets will be missing one major contributor – two-way
standout Josh Carr, now departed to West Texas A&M University.
In a district where everybody has most of their starters back, losing
Carr’s playmaking ability may put the ’Jackets at a disadvantage, but
they’ll have a mobile, experienced quarterback in senior Jeremy Quick,
who will be operating behind a mostly veteran offensive line.
Like last year, most of Kemp’s offensive starters will start on defense,
as well, and senior Wesley Kerr is expected to be a key contributor in
the defensive backfield.
Another returnee is linebacker Zac Allison, who stopped Texarkana
Pleasant Grove’s NeRonte Threatt during the ’Jackets’ stirring goal-line
stand in their area championship loss to the Hawks last November.
“We’re losing some good ones,” third-year head coach Greg Anderson
noted, “but we have some good ones coming back.”
Dropping down to the 2A ranks, the Kerens Bobcats are again picked to
win District 14-2A, while the Malakoff Tigers appear ready to rebound to
mid-pack after going 1-19 over the past two seasons.
Kerens has six offensive and nine defensive starters returning from last
year’s 8-3 playoff squad, and Texas Football picks the Bobcats to lead
the district, with Edgewood and Corsicana Midred taking the other two
Senior quarterback Pat Faulk is a key contributor for the Bobcats,
rushing for 3,552 yards and 45 touchdowns and passing for 3,212 yards
and 36 more TDs in the last two seasons.
He’ll have some help, as the Bobcats welcome back five more offensive
and eight more defensive starters.
At Malakoff, there’s a new coach in town, Jamie Driskill, who will have
eight offensive and nine defensive starters returning from last year’s
Dropping down to the six-man ranks, the Trinidad Trojans appear ready to
continue as perennial playoff contenders.
Texas Football has the Trojans picked to win District 14, as they
welcome back four starters on both sides of the ball from last year’s
8-3 playoff team.
The magazine notes: “When you have a running back named Marcus Allen who
rushes for 1,676 yards and 33 TDs, life can’t be all that bad.”
Monitor Photo/Kerry Yancey
Kemp Sting pitcher John Brooks Jr. bunts the ball up
in the air as Kemp Roughriders catcher Matt Dedie reacts to the pop-up.
Dedie almost made the catch, but Brooks later flied out. Most of the
Cedar Creek Area Little League playoff contest passed in a pitcher's
duel between Brooks and Roughriders pitcher Tyler Truitt Monday at the
Kemp Area Sports Association fields. The Sting won 1-0, but both teams
will advance to the Little League District tournament at The Colony
during the week of June 29.