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Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford doesn’t know John Stephen Jones, but he was happy for the Highland Park quarterback’s success nonetheless. Jones led the Scots to their fourth state football championship Saturday.
Its last title came in 2005 with Stafford at quarterback.
“Just a bunch of tradition,” Stafford said Thursday in a conference call with the Dallas media. “The school puts out a winner every year. Coach [Randy] Allen does a heck of a job of getting those guys prepared and ready to play and guys go out and play at a high level. It’s really cool being a part of that. Obviously when we won the state championship, it had been a pretty good while since we had won one before, so it was nice to kind of make that a real possibility for everybody again. I’m obviously proud they did it again this year.”
A pregame message from Stafford played on the video board at AT&T Stadium before the Scots beat Temple 16-7 for the Class 5A Division I title.
Jones, the grandson of Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and the son of Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones, earned offensive MVP honors.
“I’m sure that was thrilling for him,” Stafford said. “Obviously I’m happy for him. I’m sure everybody in the Jones family had a great time watching John Stephen doing what he did for the Scots.
“…I don’t really know him. But obviously [I] know the family and just happy that his success was a big part of Highland Park’s success.”
Pro Football Hall of Famer Bobby Layne began the quarterback tradition at Highland Park. He and Doak Walker were captains of the Scots’ 1943 team, which reached the semifinals before losing to eventual state champion San Angelo 21-20.
Layne led the Scots to the finals a year later but lost to Port Arthur.