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Second-Ranked Gilmer Takes High-Flying Offense Into Jacksonville

Jacksonville’s Datavion Thacker runs for yardage against Palestine last Thursday in Palestine. (© Christopher R. Vinn/www.etsn.fm)

No. 2 Gilmer Buckeyes (2-0)

vs.

Jacksonville Indians (0-2)

7:30 p.m. Friday

Tomato Bowl, Jacksonville

Coaches
  • Gilmer: Jeff Traylor
  • Jacksonville: Chris Taber

 

Last week
  • Gilmer: defeated Plano Prestonwood, 66-32
  • Jacksonville: lost to Palestine, 56-35

 

Next week
  • Gilmer: vs. Daingerfield
  • Jacksonville: at Henderson

 

Playmakers

Gilmer

  • QB Tanner Barr, Sr., 6-1, 180 (39-of-52, 686 yards, 11 TD, 2 INT; 21 carries, 46 yards)
  • RB/DB Kris Boyd, Jr., 6-0, 175 (14 carries, 165 yards, 2 TD; 3 catches, 43 yards; 7 tackles, 1 forced fumble, 2 pass break-ups)
  • RB/LB Josh Walker, Sr., 6-1, 220 (committed to Texas A&M; 3 carries, 42 yards; 16 tackles, 2 sacks, 7 QB pressures)
  • LB Demarco Boyd, Soph., 6-0, 205 (13 tackles, 4 sacks, 1 forced fumble, 1 recovery)
  • WR Desmond Pollard, Jr., 6-1, 180 (10 catches, 247 yards, 5 TD)
  • WR Chase Tate, Jr., 5-7, 150 (5 catches, 130 yards, 2 TD)
  • ATH Devondrick Dixon, Sr., 5-9, 180 (committed to Texas State; 3 carries, 29 yards; 3 catches, 51 yards, TD; 5 tackles)
  • RB Jamel Jackson, Jr., 5-8, 170 (21 carries, 194 yards, 3 TD)

 

Jacksonville

  • QB Carter McCown, Jr., 6-3, 175
  • WR Tony Lane, Sr., 5-7, 175
  • RB Lekendrick Anderson, Sr., 6-1, 210
  • RB Braylon Parish, Jr., 5-9, 178
  • RB Dontavian Thacker, Soph., 5-10, 170
  • WR Trent Sansom, Sr., 5-11, 155
  • OL Justin Stewart, Sr., 6-4, 230
  • OL Xavier Matthews, Sr., 6-1, 250

 

Just the facts
  • Gilmer is 10-3 against Class 4A teams under head coach Jeff Traylor.
  • The Buckeyes have scored 123 points through the first two games of the season, the most they’ve scored to begin a season since 2008 when Gilmer put up 133 combined points against Jasper and Emory Rains.
  • Gilmer has run 129 offensive plays on the young season for 1,258 yards, an average of 9.75 yards per snap.
  • Under Traylor, Gilmer is 150-24 overall and 96-6 in the regular season since 2003.
  • Friday will be the 10th all-time meeting between Gilmer and Jacksonville with the Buckeyes holding an 8-1 lead in the series. Prior to 2010, the last time the programs met was 1957.
  • The combined record of the seven teams that defeated Jacksonville in 2012 — Palestine, Gilmer, Henderson, Whitehouse, John Tyler, Corsicana and Lancaster — was 70-24.
  • Jacksonville’s last playoff win came in 2004, a 20-14 win over Nederland in the area round of the 4A Division II playoffs.
  • Danny Long, who coached Jacksonville to a 94-47 record from 1991-2002, is currently the athletic director for Conroe ISD.

 

Gilmer QB Tanner Barr. (Christopher Vinn, ETSN.fm)

Key matchup: Gilmer’s offensive skill position players vs. Jacksonville’s back seven defenders. A team that beats Gilmer this season will be a team that contains a deep and talented collection of backs and receivers. And so far, the Buckeyes’ first two opponents haven’t come close to accomplishing that goal. In two games, Gilmer has already scored 17 touchdowns, six of which have covered more than 30 yards. While two players — Kris Boyd and Jamel Jackson — have accounted for all five rushing touchdowns on the season, seven different Buckeyes have receiving touchdowns. In all, Gilmer has had 10 different ball carriers and 10 pass catchers in just two games. With so many options surrounding quarterback Tanner Barr, it will be tough for any defense to consistently stop Gilmer from moving the ball.

Jacksonville QB Carter McCown. (Christopher Vinn, ETSN.fm)

Jacksonville’s defense has had its issues so far this season, allowing a total of 1,124 yards in losses to Carthage and Palestine. And it doesn’t get any easy this week for the Indians, who are facing a Gilmer offense that’s averaged 629 yards per game. If nothing else, Friday’s matchup will continue to help Jacksonville prepare for teams in its district with similar offenses like Whitehouse and John Tyler. The Indians will likely need a little help from Gilmer, which turned it over five times in last week’s win over Plano Prestonwood.

Gilmer RB/CB Kris Boyd. (Christopher Vinn, ETSN.fm)

Don’t be surprised if: Gilmer plays the best game its played so far this season. Despite rolling up 657 yards, 30 first downs and 66 points last week, the Buckeyes hurt their own cause by committing 12 penalties for 115 yards and five turnovers. If they cut down on their mistakes, it’s scary how good Gilmer could be on offense, especially against a defense in Jacksonville that has struggled mightily to begin the year. The Indians have played well on offense despite the shortcomings on the other side of the ball. Junior quarterback Carter McCown has passed for 572 yards and five touchdowns, including a career-high-tying four TD passes last week. It’s up to the defense to make those numbers translate into victories.

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