High-Flying Offenses On Display Friday When Sixth-Ranked Teague Visits No. 7 Malakoff
DISTRICT 11-3A DIVISION I
No. 6 Teague Lions (7-0, 2-0)
No. 7 Malakoff Tigers (7-0, 2-0)
7:30 p.m. Friday
Tiger Stadium, Malakoff
- Teague: Donnie Osbourne
- Malakoff: Jamie Driskell
- Teague: def. Palestine Westwood, 63-19
- Malakoff: def. Elkhart, 49-13
- Teague: at Eustace, Oct. 31
- Malakoff: at Kemp, Oct. 31
- QB Austin Skinner, Sr., 6-0, 193 (126 of 180, 2,135 yards, 30 TDs, 3 INTs; 18 carries, 113 yards, 2 TDs)
- RB/DB John Love, Sr., 5-10, 190 (140 carries, 1,243 yards, 19 TDs; 5 catches, 31 yards)
- WR Aaron Mitchell, Sr., 5-9, 185 (43 catches, 706 yards, 9 TDs)
- WR Robbie West, Sr., 5-11, 163 (33 catches, 631 yards, 10 TDs)
- WR Mikkail Shepherd, Jr., 5-11, 170 (23 catches, 457 yards, 9 TDs)
- DL Will Van Winkle, Sr., 6-2, 185 (23 tackles, 6 for loss, 3 sacks, forced fumble, 2 recoveries, PBU)
- LB Zacchaeus Bell, Jr., 6-0, 170 (72 tackles, 12 for loss, forced fumble, recovery, 2 PBUs)
- LB Dylan Crawford, Jr., 6-1, 200 (82 tackles, 4 for loss, 2 forced fumbles, recovery, INT)
- RB/LB Marcus Dowell, Sr., 6-1, 205 (86 carries, 819 yards, 21 TDs)
- QB Stephan Wolfe, Sr., 5-10, 185 (62 of 89, 975 yards, 12 TDs, INT)
- WR/DB Tyler Russell, Soph. (12 catches, 187 yards, 2 TDs; 3 INTs)
- OL/DL Colton Barker, Jr., 5-10, 260
- WR Q.T. Barker, Soph. (10 catches, 308 yards, 5 TDs)
- OL Emmanuel Gonzalez, Sr.
- LB Dylan Grim, Jr. (45 tackles, 6 sacks)
- LB Rene Aguilar, Sr. (40 tackles)
Just the facts
- With one more win, Teague will tie its highest single-season win total in the last seven years.
- Teague is averaging 60.4 points and 582.7 yards per game -- 277.7 rushing and 305 passing.
- Teague's closest game was a 15-point win over Caldwell, 49-34, on Sept. 19.
- The combined record of Teague's seven previous opponents is 17-33.
- Malakoff is outscoring its opponents by an average margin of 35.6 points per game.
- Malakoff is averaging 49.1 points per game this season.
- Malakoff's closet game was a 19-point win over Palestine Westwood, 47-28, on Oct. 10.
- The combined record of Malakoff's seven previous opponents is 19-28.
Key matchup: Teague passing game vs. Malakoff secondary. It would be hard to a find more productive aerial assault anywhere in the state than the one the Teague Lions posses. The offense is piloted by senior quarterback Austin Skinner, who's helped the Lions average more than 60 points a week through seven games. The receiving corps is deep as well with three pass catchers entering Friday's game with at least nine scoring receptions. And if that weren't daunting enough, Teague running back John Love is averaging well over 170 rushing yards per game. And while Teague is getting great production from its ground game, the Lions do their most damage through the air. As mentioned above, Skinner spreads the wealth to his receivers. Not only do three of them have at least nine touchdowns, but four have at least 20 receptions. The depth at the receiver position makes it difficult for opposing defense to center in on just one or two guys downfield. Teague operates out of the spread formation, and does a tremendous job of getting all of its skill-position players involved in the game plan, but it's the big-play and efficient passing game that sets the tone.
If Malakoff can limit Teague's effectiveness through the air, the Lions' running game may be consequently affected. Much of Teague's success in the running games comes from defenses backing off the line of scrimmage to defend the pass. So, if Malakoff can get pressure on Skinner up front and its defensive backs can consistently cover the Lions' weapons downfield, the Tigers stand an excellent chance of coming out on top. It goes without saying, but Malakoff has yet to face an opponent with as potent and explosive an offense as Teague presents. While the Tigers have held teams to 13.6 points per game, it remains to be seen how they will fare against a unit that's scored 59 offensive touchdowns and has put up at least 40 points in all seven games this season. It's unrealistic to expect Malakoff to keep Teague off the scoreboard altogether, but with solid film work throughout the week, the Tigers' defensive backs may be able to cheat and anticipate some of the receivers' routes. Malakoff might get burned by taking chances defensively, but the Tigers may also be able to snag a turnover or two in the process. A calculated game of risk and reward may be in order for Malakoff's defense on Friday night.
Don't be surprised if: Malakoff gives Teague's defense a steady dose of running back Marcus Dowell. While the Tigers' coaching staff has tons of confidence in their team's defensive abilities, the more Malakoff's offense can play keep-away from Teague's high-flying attack the better off the Tigers will be in the long run. Dowell has been Malakoff's workhorse all season long. The big and talented senior back is averaging 117 rushing yards and three touchdowns on 13 carries per game. Expect all of those numbers to spike Friday night. Some of the reasons why Dowell's numbers are not higher has to do with the large number of big leads Malakoff has created this season. The Tigers' closest game this season was decided by 19 points, so there has been no need for coach Jamie Driskell to keep his starters in the game all the way through the fourth quarter on most Friday nights. This week's game figures to remain competitive throughout, so expect Dowell to get much more work than he's been accustomed to during the first seven weeks of the season. While Malakoff's offense averages 49 points per game in its own right, the Tigers probably do not have enough firepower to keep up with Teague if the game develops into a shootout. The more Dowell and the Tigers' running game can control time of possession, the greater chance Malakoff has of remaining unbeaten on the season and grabbing control of the District 11-3A Division I race.