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- Katy – Head Coach: Gary Joseph; 2016: 10-3 DI regional semifinalist; Returning Starters: 4 offense/4 defense; Key Players: RB Deondrick Glass, DL Michael Matus, OL Connor Galvin. The Tigers are poised to make a run at another state title. The offense featured a strong front anchored by Galvin, and they will pave the way for another in a line of blue chip RBs in Glass. Defensively, some holes will need filling, but it starts with a playmaker up front in Matus.
- The Woodlands – Head Coach: Mark Schmid; 2016: 15-1 DI state finalist, Returning Starters: 3 offense/5 defense; Key Players: WR KeSean Carter, DB Etanh Bonner, OL Jake Syptak, ATH Quinn Binney. Coming off a run to the title game last December, coach Schmid’s squad looks to follow up. The new QB will have a top target in the versatile Carter, while the defense will feature a ball hawking secondary led by Bonner.
- North Shore – Head Coach: Jon Kay; 2016: 12-2 DI regional finalist; Returning starters: 3 offense/4 defense; Key players: RB Kerrion Hadnot, LB Jeremiah Walter, LB Jacoby Allen. The Mustangs will be inexperienced on offense to start out, but Hadnot should be a force. The defense will be very capable, featuring the LB corps of Walter and Allen. North Shore will be a force in Region 3.
- Westfield – Head Coach: Matt Meekins; 2016: 10-4 DII regional finalist; Returning starters: 3 offense/7 defense; Key Players: DL Keondre Coburn, DE Joshua Carr, RB Rayshawn James. Westfield will be stout defensively, anchored up front by Coburn and Carr on the edge. That unit should give an inexperienced offense led by James time to jell.
- Klein Collins – Head Coach: Drew Svoboda; 2016: 13-2 DI state semifinalist; Returning Starters: 3 offense/5 defense; Key Players: LB Donovan Martin, CB Cameron Godfrey, RB Josh Powell. The Panthers lost a huge senior class coming off of the best team in program history. The running game should be in good hands with Powell, while Martin is the highlight player on a very good defense.
- Atascocita – Head Coach: Criag Stump; 2016: 12-2 DI state semifinalist; Returning Starters: 3 offense/5 defense; Key Players – OL Kenyon Green, CB Travian Blaylock. LB Jaylon Green. The Eagles made their first state semifinal last season but will need to retool. The offense was particularly hard hit, but OL Green and the rest of the OL should ease the transition. The defense features tremendous leadership with Blaylock leading an athletic secondary.
- Lamar – Head Coach: Tom Nolen; 2016: 11-2 DI regional semifinalist; Returning starters: 5 offense/5 defense; Key Players: DB Anthony Cook, RB Ta’Zhawn Henry, WR Al’Vonte Woodard, DB D’Shawn Jamison. Veteran coach Nolen will have his usual physical team ready in 2017. The defense features an outstanding secondary led by the duo of Cook and Jamison. The offense will have big play capability with Henry and Woodard.
- Pearland – Head Coach: James Farmer; 2016: 8-4 DI area finalist; Returning Starters: 9 offense/6 defense; Key Players: DE Gilbert Ibenene, RB Jalein Benefield, LB DeAntoine Carter. The wildly successful Tony Heath era is over, with the veteran coach retiring and coach Farmer taking over. His first team will blend talent and experience with the defense led by playmakers like Ibenene and Carter. Benefield will run behind an experienced line. Look for the Oilers to be a major threat once again.
- Ridge Point – Head Coach: Brent Sniffin; 2016: 11-1 DI area finalist: Returning starters: 9 offense/5 defense; Key Players: TE Mustapha Muhammed, QB Aaron Allen, LB Chad Bailey. The Panthers have quietly become one of the best programs in the area. An experienced offense will have a great pitch-catch combo with Allen and Muhammed, one of the state’s highest rated TEs. The defense took more graduation losses, but they boast a great sideline to sideline playmaker in Bailey.
- Dickinson – Head Coach: John Snelson; 2016: 10-2 DI area finalist; Returning starters: 6 offense/4 defense; Key Players: ATH Montel Parker, RB Myles Lewis, TE Jalen Wydermyer. Coach Snelson will have another very athletic group. Parker can line up at any number of positions including QB, and Lewis and Wydermyer are big play threats as well. The defense will need to retool, but DB Bryon Broussard is a good one.
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