Marshall Takes On Star Studded Dallas South Oak Cliff
Class 5A Division II
Region II Area Playoff
Marshall Mavericks (7-4)
Dallas South Oak Cliff Bears (8-3)
7:30 p.m. Friday
TMF Rose Stadium, Tyler
- Marshall: Clint Harper
- South Oak Cliff: Emmett Jones
- Marshall: defeated Nacogdoches, 67-42
- South Oak Cliff: defeated Lancaster, 42-35
- Winner plays Frisco Heritage-Terrell winner, 5A Division II Region II quarterfinals
- OL Chett Munden, Sr., 6-6, 305 (committed to North Texas)
- ATH Cameron Haller, Soph., 5-10, 185
- WR John Love, Sr., 5-11, 185
- RB Deondre Osborne, Jr., 5-9, 210
- RB Chavis Mills, Jr., 5-9, 185
- QB Justin Hart, Jr., 5-9, 175
- DL Trey Valentine, Sr., 6-3, 225
- DL Antonio Washington, Jr., 6-1, 265
- QB David Johnson, Jr., 6-1, 172 (134 of 213, 2,430 yards, 32 TDs, 6 INT)
- RB Jordan Stevenson, Sr., 5-10, 185 (191 carries, 2,003 yards, 25 TDs; committed to Texas)
- WR J.F. Thomas, Sr., 6-4, 180 (52 catches, 1,203 yards, 18 TDs; committed to TCU)
- DB Xzavier Ausborne, Sr., 5-10, 170 (committed to Wisconsin)
- DB Takadrae Williams, Sr., 5-10, 175 (committed to Wisconsin)
- S Prentice McKinney, Sr., 6-2, 180 (committed to Notre Dame)
- WR Ladarryl Blair, Sr., 5-11, 181 (committed to Boise State)
- WR Lamont Johnson, Sr., 5-11, 162 (committed to SMU)
Just the facts
- Marshall has reached the area round of the playoffs for the first time since 2008. It made it to the regional quarterfinal that year.
- South Oak Cliff has reached the area round for the second straight season.
- South Oak Cliff has eight players committed to FBS schools and 13 players with FBS college scholarship opportunities.
- The Bears played in a weak District 13-5A and easily ran the table for its fourth district title in five years. The defense allowed 33 points in those six games.
- South Oak Cliff was not very competitive against the absolute top-tier of Metroplex teams with losses to Cedar Hill and DeSoto, Class 6A teams. But it crushed Fort Worth Wyatt, 71-0, and gave fell to a solid South Grand Prairie team by seven points.
- Marshall has strung together impressive wins in back-to-back weeks. It came from behind to upset Sulphur Springs in the district finale two weeks ago, 36-27, and beat a good Nacogdoches team last week, 67-42, in the bi-district round.
- The Mavericks will drive 62 miles to Trinity Mother Frances Rose Stadium. South Oak Cliff will travel 102 miles one-way.
Key matchup: Marshall's discipline versus South Oak Cliff's college-caliber talent. There's no question about it. The Mavericks are outgunned by the Bears' 13 future college players. South Oak Cliff has players heading to Texas, TCU, SMU, Boise State, Notre Dame and Wisconsin.
Marshall will have to play a complete game in all phases to get the win. The Mavericks have done just that the past two weeks against solid Sulphur Springs and Nacogdoches teams, so there's no better time to go up against South Oak Cliff.
Quarterback Justin Hart completed 10 of 12 passes for 204 yards last week in the Nacogdoches win and Chavis Mills ripped off a 69-yard run. Marshall's defense gave up more than 550 yards, but it did create a few critical stops and forced Nacogdoches into a series of failed onside kick attempts which opened the Mavericks' lead.
Marshall has great framework on both its offensive and defensive lines. Anything the defensive line can give will be appreciated because South Oak Cliff quarterback David Johnson is nearing 2,500 yards passing and primary back Jordan Stevenson eclipsed 2,000 yards last week in a hard-fought win over a decent Lancaster program.
If Marshall walks away with the victory, expect trench play to have a large impact.
Don't be surprised if: Marshall gives South Oak Cliff a tough game. The Bears mowed over weak teams in the regular season and have really struggled to put away competitive groups. The Mavericks were forged in a much tougher district and seemed appear to have turned a big corner.
South Oak Cliff definitely has a raw talent advantage, but don't count out Marshall's recent resolve. Just making the playoffs was a challenge in the latter weeks of the regular season yet the team is one game away from football after Thanksgiving.