Mesquite Horn and Longview have had some great battles over the last several years, but the 2013 installment of this budding rivalry could be one of the best yet.

Horn and Longview enter the fall as the two favorites atop District 12-5A. The Oct. 18 encounter at Lobo Stadium could ultimately be the de facto district championship game.

Veteran starting quarterback Destri White will lead a high-powered Horn offense into this contest. White has started since his sophomore season and had a monster junior campaign, throwing for 2,196 yards and 28 touchdowns while rushing for 805 yards and eight scores for a Jaguar offense that averaged 39.5 points per game.

Longview DL DeRodrick Alexander. (Christopher Vinn,

He'll have plenty of protection up front from an offensive line that features 6-foot-3, 300-pound Jonathan Alvarez and 6-foot-5, 280-pound  junior Conner Dyer.

Longview counters with an athletic defense that boasts quickness and speed at virtually every position. By that point of October, TCU-committed defensive tackle Zaycoven Henderson should be back and fully recovered from his foot surgery to fix a fracture, beefing up the Lobos' line in their 4-2-5 scheme. He'll join veteran DeRodrick Alexander to give Horn plenty to handle in the trenches.

When White drops back to pass he'll have to worry about safeties Stephan Maxey and Travin Howard and cornerbacks Chris Coby and Jhavaurian Moore, who are expected to give veteran head coach John King an athletic and physical secondary.

Horn won last year's meeting 25-17 in Mesquite, so there's no doubt the Lobos will be more than motivated to avenge that loss. 2013 Preseason Top 25 Games of the Year