Greg Ward + John Tyler Offense Could Be Tested By Frisco Centennial’s Sack-Happy Defense
Class 4A Division I Region II
John Tyler Lions (12-1)
Frisco Centennial Titans (12-1)
7:30 p.m. Friday
Lion Memorial Stadium, Ennis
John Tyler: Ricklan Holmes
Frisco Centennial: Mark Howard
Road To Regional Final
- Bi-district: def. Waxahachie, 77-20
- Area: def. Wylie, 38-10
- Regional semifinal: def. Frisco, 45-28
- Bi-district: def. West Mesquite, 33-25
- Area: def. Dallas Kimball, 38-12
- Regional semifinal: def. Red Oak, 40-14
Next week: Winner plays Denton Guyer (11-2) or Birdville (13-0) in a 4A Division I state semifinal.
- QB Greg Ward, Sr., 5-11, 165 (207 of 302, 3,343 yards, 37 TDs, 1 INT; 145 carries, 664 yards, 11 TDs; committed to Houston)
- WR Fred Ross, Sr., 6-1, 185 (63 catches, 1,290 yards, 18 TDs; 26 carries, 144 yards, 3 TDs; committed to Oklahoma State)
- DE Tyus Bowser, Sr., 6-3, 220 (59 tackles, 23 sacks, 14 QB pressures, 5 forced fumbles, 2 recoveries)
- ATH DeQuante Woods, Sr., 5-11, 185 (86 carries, 569 yards, 13 TDs; 26 catches, 249 yards, 1 TD; 47 tackles, 1 sack, 1 INT)
- LB Richard Gipson, Sr., 6-2, 220 (111 tackles, 4 forced fumbles, 1 INT)
- WR/DB Darion Flowers, Sr., 6-0, 180 (53 catches, 901 yards, 8 TDs; 38 tackles, 2 INTs, 1 forced fumble, 1 recovery)
- DT Chris Mobley, Sr., 6-1, 235 (83 tackles, 5 sacks, 10 QB pressures, 1 fumble recovery)
- WR Justice Liggins, Sr., 6-1, 190 (43 catches, 529 yards, 6 TDs)
- DB Terry Ausborne, Jr., 5-11, 165 (77 tackles, 6 INTs, 1 fumble recovery)
- DB Elliot Hart, Sr., 5-11, 175 (61 tackles, 4 INTs, 1 forced fumble, 1 recovery, 4 pass break-ups)
- QB Lamar Jordan, Sr. (189 of 312, 2,404 yards, 29 TDs, 8 INTs; 129 carries, 562 yards, 9 TDs)
- WR Cody Bagwell, Sr. (41 catches, 841 yards, 9 TDs)
- RB Chris Johnson, Jr. (123 carries, 750 yards, 7 TDs)
- DE K.J. Smith, Sr., 6-2, 240 (94 tackles, 18 sacks, 20 QB pressures, 5 forced fumbles; committed to Baylor)
- DB Ranthony Texada, Sr., 5-10, 160 (57 tackles, 4 INTs, 21 pass break-ups, 1 forced fumble; committed to TCU)
- LB Andrew Pierce, Jr. (99 tackles, 5 sacks, 5 QB pressures, 1 forced fumble)
- LB Alex Walker, Sr. (81 tackles, 3 sacks, 6 QB pressures, 1 forced fumble)
- S Josh Garrett, Sr. (52 tackles, 4 INTs, 5 pass break-ups, 1 forced fumble)
- WR Stoney Hawkins, Jr. (51 catches, 538 yards, 10 TDs)
- WR Kelly Cordova, Jr. (45 catches, 496 yards, 6 TDs; 38 carries, 315 yards, 2 TDs)
Just the facts
- John Tyler is rolling in the playoffs, outscoring its three postseason foes by a combined score of 160-58.
- The Lions are averaging 41.8 points per game on the year, but since district play began, JT is scoring at a 51.5 clip.
- On the season, JT's offense averages 428 yards per game (261 passing, 167 rushing).
- John Tyler star receiver Fred Ross has scored at least one touchdown in eight straight games.
- The combined record of JT opponents this season is 70-68, which does not include Mexico-based Autonoma de Nuevo Leon.
- Frisco Centennial has reached the fourth round of the playoffs thanks in large measure to its defense, which gives up just 15.9 points per game and only 11.6 over the last five games.
- The strength of the Titans' defense is their front, which has totaled 39 sacks in 13 games. Eighteen of them belong to Baylor commit K.J. Smith.
- Frisco Centennial is also a plus-7 in turnover margin with 17 interceptions and six fumble recoveries.
- Smith has five sacks in the playoffs, and he's been held without a sack just three times this season.
- The combined record of Centennial opponents this season is 77-68.
Key matchup:John Tyler QB Greg Ward vs. Friso Centennial DE K.J. Smith and CB Ranthony Texada. It's seems simplistic, but whoever plays the best Friday night stands an excellent chance of deciding the outcome. The game could really come down to Ward, and how he handles the pressure from Smith and the superb coverage skills of Texada, a TCU commit. Ward's elusiveness in the pocket, evidenced by his team-leading 664 rushing yards, makes him a threat even if pressured off the edge. Ward's ability to extend plays with his feet also make a defensive back's job that much harder in coverage. It's likely Texada will match up with Oklahoma State pledge Fred Ross, who's made a career of improvising when pressure on the quarterback causes plays to break down. It's also likely Smith and Texada will be the best DL-DB combo Ward's faced all season, just as Ward is probably the best all-around QB those two have seen this year.
Don't be surprised if: This will be the closest game John Tyler has had in the playoffs thus far. That's not saying much, considering the Lions' average margin of victory in the postseason is 34 points. Frisco Centennial appears to have the pieces on defense to challenge John Tyler's high-flying offensive attack. With the amount of pressure Centennial is able to generate on the quarterback, JT may resort to trying to establish the running game early with DeQuante Woods, who has emerged of late with eight touchdowns in his last five games.