Another high school football season has come and gone for the Northeast Tarrant County area. There were plenty of great stories and individual performances. What’s only disappointing is that we didn’t have a team practicing on Thanksgiving. That’s usually a sign of how well a season is going.
We only had one team reach double figures in wins. That was Euless Trinity at 10-1. But the Trojans’ season ended surprisingly early in the Class 6A Division I bi-district round. Carroll went 9-3. Grapevine finished 8-3.
But that’s the way it goes. We learned that there were plenty of solid teams. We believed Trinity had the makings of a dominant team but had a bad night.
It’s our privilege to bring to you our annual superlatives for the 2015 season.
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Player of the Year: Lil’Jordan Humphrey, Carroll, Sr. RB: If you want to talk about a player who put a team on his back, it was the Dragons’ Division I prospect. He literally willed this team into the postseason and past Cedar Hill in the bi-district round. Humphrey nearly pulled off a 1,000-1,000 season. Humphrey finished the season with 1,280 rushing yards and 876 receiving yards. He also scored 22 touchdowns (14 rushing, 8 receiving). Carroll coaches devised a way to get him in position to get his touches. He lined up in the backfield. He split out at wide receiver and led all receivers was 57 catches. He also threw the occasional pass. If Humphrey isn’t on this roster, it’s hard to know what Carroll’s season would have looked like. You let your best players be your best players, and Carroll did that with Humphrey.
Honorable mention: Ja’Ron Wilson, RB, Euless Trinity; Ke’Von Ahmad, WR, Colleyville Heritage; Tyler Tutt, RB Keller; Brandon Bowen, DE, Northwest Byron Nelson; Chris Daniels, DT, Euless Trinity.
Coach of the Year: Randy Jackson, Grapevine: When a team reaches the playoffs in a coaching staff’s first season at 3-8, the staffs will always appreciate it. But it also understands that’s not to serve as the program’s standard. In Jackson’s second season, the Mustangs flipped the script and went 8-3. Jackson saw a young program pull off groundbreaking wins over Fort Worth Arlington Heights, North Crowley and Birdville. Jackson saw the continued development of sophomore quarterback Alan Bowman and a receiving corps show explosiveness from RalphLauren McCauley. But Grapevine had to navigate through seven different offensive line combinations. This defense also improved weekly. Had it not been for a snafu on a last-minute field goal attempt against Denton in the Class 5A Division I bi-district round, this program probably pulls off a win. Nonetheless, the turnaround in Grapevine football continues.
Honorable mention: Tony Baccarini, Keller Fossil Ridge; Chris Jensen, Euless Trinity; Brian Polk, Northwest Byron Nelson; Joe Willis, Colleyville Heritage
Newcomer of the Year: Ke’Von Ahmad, Colleyville Heritage, So., WR: No one knew anything about this speedster from the east coast of Florida. He and his family moved to the area in August. His first day with the program was the first day of fall workouts. Week after week, he produced big play after big play. Ahmad, who has a personal best 10.76 in the 100, finished the season with 1,390 yards and 18 touchdowns. Of those scores, 15 of them were from beyond 25 yards. That’s what you call a big-play threat. Ahmad also rushed for 153 yards and three other touchdowns. Ahmad automatically developed a chemistry with new quarterback Cameron Roane.
Honorable mention: Cameron Roane, Colleyville Heritage, QB, Sr.; Shemar Coleman, RB, Carroll
Game of the Year: Keller Timber Creek 57, Northwest Byron Nelson 54 (5OT): It was the District 5-6A opener for both on Sept. 25. Of course, no one knew then that this outcome would carry weight until the final week of the regular season when playoffs were decided. When Timber Creek scored in the fourth quarter to tie the game, 28-28, this evolved into an epic battle. The two sides answered each other through the first four extra frames. Nelson went first in the fifth overtime and settled for Mason Shank’s 36-yard field. But the Falcons found the winner when quarterback Caleb Collins dashed in from 10 yards. The game will be remembered for years by those who were there.
Honorable mention: Carroll 38, Coppell 37 (2OT); Keller Central 24, Denton Guyer 21.
Our picks have concluded. We selected Carroll over Denton Guyer in the Class 6A Division II Region I area round. Well, that didn’t work out so well. Guyer’s rushing attack proved to be too much as it knocked off Carroll, 48-35, Nov. 20 in Allen. However, Guyer has made a great run as it is playing in the Region I championship game against Mansfield. You can’t win them all. We’re looking forward to doing this again.
Our final record: 87-24
Winning percentage: 78.4