East Texas is home to five public school six-man football programs.

Three of those teams -- Leverett's Chapel, Oakwood, and Apple Springs -- reached the playoffs last season and each won nine games.

Here's a look at what to expect from the region's public six-man squads in 2013.

East Texas Public School Six-Man Preview

PLAYMAKERS

  • Dilyn Cooley, Sr., WR, Leverett's Chapel
  • Louis Collins, Sr., LB, Oakwood
  • Stacey Davis, Jr., QB, Karnack
  • Damiyne Durham, Sr., QB/S, Oakwood
  • Josh Suggs, Sr., RB, Apple Springs

District 15 Six-Man Division I

Leverett's Chapel LB Felipe Amaro. (Christopher Vinn, ETSN.fm)

Leverett's Chapel Lions

Coach: Matt Everett

2012 finish: 9-3 (Six-Man Division I Region IV area finalist)

Returning starters: 3 offensive, 5 defensive

Players to watch

  • WR Dilyn Cooley
  • DT Colby Shaw
  • DT Mark Overman
  • LB Felipe Amaro
  • WR Paco Chavez
  • ATH James Rodgers

 

Leverett's Chapel ATH James Rodgers. (Christopher Vinn, ETSN.fm)

2013 Outlook: Replacing four-year varsity standout Clay White at quarterback will be difficult. White put up monster numbers every year -- except for his sophomore season, which was abbreviated by a knee injury -- so veteran coach Matt Everett must find somebody new to get leading receiver Dilyn Cooley his touches.

The good news for Leverett's Chapel? The Eagles return all but one of their starting defenders after allowing only 30.6 points per game and recording three shutouts, and 108 of the 367 total points they yielded came in an eight-point loss to Fruitvale. Another positive is the coaching staff believes James Rodgers can make a big difference in the kicking game.

Leverett's Chapel is likely to return to the postseason and should contend for the District 15 championship along with Ladonia Fannindel. The Lions beat Fannindel 60-14 at home last season, but travel to Ladonia on Nov. 1 this season.

 

Fruitvale Bobcats

Coach: Paul Johnston

2012 finish: 5-5

Returning starters: 2 offensive, 2 defensive

Players to watch

  • LB Wade Johnson
  • RB Dustin Earl
  • WR Gavino Rongel
  • WR Stephen Holland
  • WR Eric Lane

 

2013 Outlook: Fruitvale lost eight of its 12 starters, but the Bobcats are at a numerical advantage against their six-man brethren. Fruitvale's enrollment of 93 is the largest of District 15's five teams and among the 10 largest in Six-Man Division I, which has no schools with an enrollment greater than 98.

Therefore, the Bobcats have players who gained valuable experience a season ago even if they didn't start.

Fruitvale was the hard-luck team in the 2012 playoff sweepstakes. Fruitvale, Leverett's Chapel, and Ladonia Fannindel each finished 3-1 in district, but the Bobcats were left out after the tiebreaker. Qualifying for the playoffs will be tough since coach Paul Johnston's squad lost a lot to graduation, but if the newcomers quickly transition to their starting roles, Fruitvale should again be in the hunt for the district's second playoff spot.

 

District 16 Six-Man Division I

Oakwood TE Dominique Johnson. (Christopher Vinn, ETSN.fm)

Oakwood Panthers

Coach: Mike Heckathorn

2012 finish: 9-3 (Six-Man Division I Region IV finalist)

Returning starters: 5 offensive, 5 defensive

Players to watch

  • QB/S Damiyne Durham
  • RB/DE Jacquez Anderson
  • C/LB Louis Collins
  • DT Thomas Nicholson
  • TE Dominique Johnson
  • DT Cameron Brummett
  • DB Will Barnett

 

Oakwood RB/DE Jacquez Anderson. (Christopher Vinn, ETSN.fm)

2013 Outlook: Oakwood came a win away from the state semifinals last year and could once again be a threat deep into the playoffs this fall.

Multi-sport star Damiyne Durham is back at quarterback after spending the summer playing a lot of basketball with his AAU team. He earned all-state honors as a junior, when he amassed almost 3,000 total yards of offense and 54 total touchdowns.

Dominique Johnson figures to once again be one of Durham's top targets. Collins and Nicholson will lead a defense that limited foes to 43.7 points per game last year.

But offense is where Oakwood excels. If they stay healthy, they could eclipse the 67.3 average they posted last season. The Panthers enter 2013 as the favorites in District 16 and could make some noise come November.

 

Apple Springs Eagles

Coach: Cody Moree

2012 finish: 9-2 (Six-Man Division I Region IV bi-district finalist)

Returning starters: 3 offensive, 4 defensive

Players to watch

  • RB Josh Suggs
  • LB Heath Jerrett
  • QB Dylan Coleman
  • C Chase Jesse
  • FS Dillon Pate
  • WR Jordan Freeman

 

2013 Outlook: Apple Springs returns two-thirds of its defense after holding opponents to 31.2 points per game in the Eagles' 10 contests on the field a year ago (not including a forfeit win vs. Chester). Heath Jerrett, who had more than 100 tackles, leads that unit from his linebacker spot.

Half of the offense is gone, but Josh Suggs is back after rushing for more than 2,200 yards and almost three dozen touchdowns in 2012, when the Eagles finished the regular season 9-1 before dropping a 50-44 first-round thriller to Leverett's Chapel.

Apple Springs has holes to fill created by graduation, but the Eagles should compete for a playoff spot.

 

District 16 Six-Man Division II

Karnack Indians

Coach: Lawrence Gullette

2012 finish: 3-6

Returning starters: 4 offensive, 3 defensive

Players to watch

  • QB Stacey Davis
  • LB Kelvin Jackson
  • ATH Bryce Barr
  • DE Bradley Miller
  • RB Wendell Stafford
  • DT Cody Rose
  • LB Ismael Ruiz

 

2013 Outlook: Karnack returns more than half of its 12 starters from last year's 3-6 team, although that squad got all of its wins against private school teams: Tyler King's Academy, Tyler Home Educators Association Team, and Marshall Christian Academy.

The Indians went 3-1 against private school competition during the non-district schedule, but were outscored 320-61 in five losses to fellow public school competition, including a 231-18 deficit in District 16 play.

Nevertheless, the return of 1,200-yard rusher Stacey Davis is reason for hope as the Tribe returns two-thirds of its starting offense. Karnack has 9 of 13 players back from last year's squad, so the experience should help.

Qualifying for the playoffs will be tough, but don't be surprised if Karnack is significantly improved in 2013.