I may be getting a little ahead of myself. OK, I AM getting a little ahead of myself, but this is fun to think about.
What if the defending 2AA state champs, East Lincoln is in the same playoff bracket as the 2 time defending 2A champs Shelby?
I talked about Shelby yesterday and East Lincoln should be very good this season as well.
The playoff brackets are determined by the Average Daily Membership (ADM). Last year, East Lincoln was at 926 and Shelby was at 823. Doesn't seem likely, but you never know how enrollment will change from year to year and past history says, it could very well happen. Both schools have spent times in both AA and A the last 10 years so enrollment can fluctuate.
Since 2005, the 2 teams have been in the same bracket 5 times and 5 times they have been in different brackets. The last 2 years, they have been in different ones so this could be the year these 2 are in the same and they meet in the playoffs and what a game it would be if that did happen.
Here's more on East Lincoln for 2015.
After a dominant 2014 where the Mustang went 16-0 and won the 2AA state title, they are poised to have another outstanding 2015.
One thing East has always been able to do is score points in bunches. Last year, they averaged 42 points per game. The beat should go on for the Mustangs with the return of all state quarterback Chazz Surratt.
Chazz threw for 43 hundred yards last season with 51 TD. He also rushed for 12 hundred yards and another 20 TD. He has verbally committed to North Carolina.
Most feel Chazz is the best football player in the state regardless of classification. That is a huge chip for head coach Mike Byus, but he has so much more firepower on offense.
The 2nd leading rusher behind Chazz, Colten Banks is back as well. He rushed for almost 8 hundred yards and 14 TD.
The Mustangs love to throw the ball and Chazz's favorite target is his brother Sage Surratt. He is back for his junior season after catching 87 passes for 12 hundred yards and 20 TD.
Another favorite target is back in Cameron Dollar. He averaged 18 yards per catch last season.
The offensive line has a few holes to fill but will be led by returning starters LT Austin Lunceford and center AJ Pressley.
The offense will clearly be the strength of this team, but defense will be a big concern as only return 4 starters.
Only 1 starter is back on the defensive line and that is defensive end Lucas Lambeck. He had 94 tackles last season and 8 tackles for loss.
At linebacker, coach Byus has 2 starters back in Torey Haynes and T.J. McLain. McLain would rack up 107 tackles last season while Haynes would have 65.
The secondary only has 1 starter back in Trevor Childers. He had a 60 tackle season in 2014.
It may take a while for the defense to catch up with the offense as they fill in a lot of holes, but the O will be more than able to outscore teams until the defense figures it out.
They will have 3 games to work it out before their first real test on September 11th when they go to Forestview. The last 2 times these team have met, the scoreboard have gotten a big time workout as the teams have combined for 73 and 71 points.
Even with all the questions on D, this team is a favorite to win a state title.
That is if they don't have any major injures. With no real depth, this team has to stay healthy to reach their lofty expectations.
Who would I pick in a game between Shelby and East Lincoln in 2015? You can ask me that August 14th on our FFN Preview Show. You can all in that night to talk about the upcoming high school football season and we will reveal our preseason FFN Top 10.