It had been a few years since Elysian Fields experienced a season like the one it had in 2016.

The Yellowjackets breezed through the regular season unbeaten before ultimately falling to Newton in the regional semifinals. EF's 12-1 record and trip to the third round were the best it accomplished since 2012's run to the state semifinals.

Elysian Fields begins the 2017 season ranked No. 7 in our preseason Class 3A poll.

Graduation forced the 'Jackets to part ways with their two biggest weapons on offense, quarterback Logan Hughes (3,722 yards, 37 TD's passing; 708 yards, 7 TD's rushing) and receiver Dylan Parker, a Stephen F. Austin signee who capped his high school career with 60 catches, 1,512 yards and 22 touchdowns.

But the cupboard won't be bare for fifth-year head coach Scott Ford.

Running backs Chris Smith and Nathan Johnson return to the backfield, behind a mammoth offensive line anchored by Jade Ashalintubbi (6-6, 315) and Malik Johnson (6-4, 275).

Defensively, Elysian Fields only brings back four starters.

Jeb Dickson and Stone Crisp are both solid linebackers, while Cole Myers will provide continuity in the secondary. Preseason Class 3A Poll

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