IT’S IMPRESSIVE, to say the least. The Gilmer Buckeyes have won their district in 10 of the last 11 seasons. In six of the last nine seasons, they’ve gone undefeated in the regular season. And in every one of those 11 district championship seasons, they’ve gone undefeated in district play.
So far they are 2-0 in the second incarnation of the District of Doom. An original member of the district, 1-0 Henderson, is the next opponent on Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. in Longview’s Lobo Stadium as the Buckeyes and the Lions will be participating in the KYKX Game of the Week.
It is certainly possible for the Buckeyes to win District 16-3A without going undefeated, but it would be a first in the Jeff Traylor era if that happens. The Buckeyes are accustomed to running the table. Old habits are hard to break.
The Buckeyes are 5-1 overall after their 50-28 win over the Chapel Hill Bulldogs here last Friday night. Coach Traylor cited some of the leaders of the opportunistic Black Flag Defense against Chapel Hill:
Xavier Fluellen (six tackles, two assists, one pressure; one forced fumble; one fumble recovery); Josh Walker (nine tackles, five assists, three pressures, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery); Trey Washington (five tackles, one assist, one fumble recovery); Brandon Barnes (six tackles, three assists) and John McPherson (four tackles, three assists).
“Offensively, the offensive line played very well,” Coach Traylor said.
Seven guys play those five positions in the interior of the line and they all deserve to be mentioned. They are Dillon Sampson at center; Brady English, Blake Rice and Justin Vestal at guards; Jackson McQueen, Dylan Adkinson and Mitch Lange at tackles.
“Jamel Jackson, Josh Walker and Kris Boyd — all three running backs — played extremely well,” Coach Traylor added.
Turning to Henderson, he said, “They’re a really good football team. Just another very talented, great team. Seems like our schedule’s full of them.
“They have a very good offensive line. Left tackle Nick Siler, 6’4” 255, is committed to Air Force. Right tackle Justice Parker is just a fantastic ball player.
“Their running back’s very good, Diamante Wright.”
Randy Davis also will see time in the backfield, he said.
“Probably the preseason MVP of our district, Patrick ‘Monster’ Brown, wears No. 3 and has killed us for years.
“Defensively, they have an all-state player returning in Bo Brady (44). Jamal Kind, their ‘mike’ linebacker, is a fantastic player.
“Both defensive tackles are very good, Brandon Armstrong and Contrell Phillips.”
Traylor also praised the play of defensive end Ta’Ondrick Thirkill.
“Secondary’s very athletic,” he added.
They’re “just a very good football team,” he repeated in conclusion.
Special teams could have a big influence in the outcome. Henderson’s Brown had six punt return touchdowns and one kickoff return TD in 2011, and has already returned a punt 90 yards for a touchdown against Nacogdoches. And don’t forget Gilmer’s Chase Tate had a punt return for a touchdown against Daingerfield. Meanwhile, teammate Kris Boyd, in addition to the sensational season he is having at running back, has come close to returning a number of kickoffs all the way.
Senior Janson Moore won the competition to become the Lions’ starting quarterback, a position left open by the graduation of the valedictorian of the Henderson Class of 2012, LaBradford Del Barnes, who has taken his brains and brawn to Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y., where he is playing defensive back for the Ivy League school.
Henderson head coach Dickey Meeks characterized the reconstituted District of Doom as “great for fans” but “not very good for coaches” on Bryan Houston’s Sports Talk Live on 99.3 FM.
The Lions have yet to win the district. Even so, they’ve made the playoffs as the Division I representative both years, played nine playoff games and won a state championship.
It is likely they’ll go into Division II should they make the playoffs this year. With the addition of Kilgore and Chapel Hill to the district, Henderson is now the third-largest school in enrollment.
Coach Meeks acknowledged the departure of Barnes has forced the Lions to adapt on offense.
“Basically, you’re going to have to shift your weight to some of the other positions” and “let some other guys help carry the load.”
Obviously Brown, the prototypical “athlete” in recruiting terms, is the go-to guy now on offense.
Brown is considering offers from a couple of Division I schools, with more expressing interest.
“He scored touchdowns in every way possible last year,” Meeks said, noting he even threw for a touchdown.
“We’re going to have to use him in a lot of ways to help us offensively.”
Through five games in 2012, “Monster” has rushed 29 times for 191 yards and a touchdown and caught 16 passes for 280 yards and a score.
Meeks said Henderson is continuing to be a “running back by committee” team, as it has been the past few seasons with much success.
“We use three to four running backs in a game, mainly because they’re also starters in other positions.”
Meeks said one good thing is that the Lions have seven starters back on defense.
“You’re going to have to step up and kind of carry us until we can get this thing going offensively,” he has told his defense.
He concluded, “The biggest strength of this team is our depth. We have quality depth.
“A lot of times when you have guys behind guys, there’s a big dropoff. I don’t think there’s a big dropoff this year in almost all of our positions.”
Tradition is developing into a kind of “twelfth man” in Henderson just as it is in Gilmer.
“The guys coming up expect to play well. And when you have those expectations, I think that it helps your program,” said the veteran Henderson mentor, who is well into his fourth decade of coaching high school football.
Henderson is designated as the home team this year.
Gilmer Buckeyes Season to Date:
Atlanta, won 31-17
Plano Prestonwood, lost 42-12
Jacksonville, won 34-33
Daingerfield, won 43-14
Gladewater, won 21-13
Chapel Hill, won 50-28
Henderson Lions Season to Date:
Plano Prestonwood, lost 56-21
Nacogdoches, won 26-14
Hallsville, lost 21-20
Jacksonville, won 37-13
Chapel Hill, won 24-6
MAP AND DIRECTIONS:
A Google map with directions to Lobo Stadium in Longview is online at GilmerMirror.com.
BUCKEYE TICKET LINE:
903-841-7777 С Advance tickets are on sale through Thursday at the Gilmer ISD Administration Building. Sale hours are 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day. Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for students. All tickets at the gate are $7.
LUNCH WITH THE COACH:
Noon Today, Buckeyes Booster Club meets at Gilmer Country Club.
FRIDAY NIGHT DOOM:
If you need to take in a game on Friday night, there is a District 16-3A game not far away as Gladewater is hosting Bullard.
Kris Boyd’s five touchdowns on the ground last Friday night was a rare feat for a team known more for passing. He still has something to shoot for, though. Buddy Tate of the Buckeyes rushed for six touchowns twice in 1970.
WHERE ARE THEY NOW?
Daniel Jenkins is an offensive tackle for the Sam Houston State Bearkats. He is a senior. He was an all-state lineman in 2007.
Pat Gordon works for Upshur Rural. He was an all-state safety in 2002.
Derek Moore is a CPA in Gilmer. He was an all-district tight end in 2001.
Etex, Channel 2, will replay Gilmer games at 10 a.m. Saturdays and 6 p.m. Wednesdays.
(This channel also carries the audio of the games live.)
New Diana games will be replayed 2 p.m. Saturdays and 6 p.m. Thursdays
Harmony games will be replayed 6 p.m. Saturdays and 6 p.m. Tuesdays.
GILMER BUCKEYES HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL APP:
MAXPREPS HOME PAGE:
KYKX Game of the Week: Saturday, Oct. 13
Gilmer Buckeyes vs. Henderson Lions
Lobo Stadium, Longview, 7 p.m.
of the Week:
Player of the Week:
Players of the Week:
Shawn Ray, Offense
Nick Smith, Defense
Grant Pearson, Special Teams
October 13 - Henderson @ Longview
2011 Record: 11-3, Class 3A Division I Semifinalist
Last meeting: 2011, Gilmer won 35-20
Head Coach: Dickey Meeks (7th season)
Returning Starters: 3 Offense/7 Defense
Did you know? Henderson won the Class 3A Division I state championship in 2010 with a 28-21 win over Chapel Hill at Cowboys Stadium.
Gilmer v. Henderson Game Info & Notes
By JOE DODD
October 13- Henderson @ Longview’s Lobo Stadium
STADIUM: Lobo Stadium, Longview, Texas
STADIUM CAPACITY: 10,500
STADIUM SURFACE: Field Turf
Airline Rd. @ Hawkins Parkway
Longview, TX 75605
2011 Record: 11-3 DI Semifinalist, 3-2 district
2012 Record: 3-2
Week 0: lost to Plano Prestonwood 21-56
Week 1: won @ Nacogdoches 26-14
Week 2: lost to Hallsville 20-21
Week 3: won @ Jacksonville 37-13
Week 4: won @ Chapel Hill 24-6
Week 6: OPEN
Total Points For: 128
Average Points For Per Game: 25.6
Total Points Against: 110
Average Points Against Per Game: 22
Head Coach: Dickey Meeks (7th season, 38-36)
Returning Starters: 3 Offense/8 Defense
Offensive Formation: Multiple
Defensive Formation: Multiple
Players to Watch:
WR Patrick Brown, Sr. 5’ 11”, 170 lbs. (16 catches, 280 yards, 1 TD)
LT Nick Siler, Sr. 6’4”, 265 lbs.
DE Bo Brady, Sr. 6’0”, 210 lbs.
Historical Stats, Records, and Program Information
YEAR W-L-T COACH
2000 8-3-0 307-203 Dennis Alexander
2001 6-5-0 294-311 Dennis Alexander
2002 9-3-0 278-157 Reid Waller
2003 3-8-0 157-222 Reid Waller
2004 5-5-0 170-298 Reid Waller
2005 3-7-0 128-245 Reid Waller
2006 1-9-0 Dickey Meeks
2007 4-6-0 Dickey Meeks
2008 1-9-0 Dickey Meeks
2009 5-5-0 Dickey Meeks 2010 13-2-0 Dickey Meeks 2011 11-3-0 Dickey Meeks 2012 3-2-0 Dickey Meeks
BY DECADES W- L- T
1914-19 2- 5-1
1920-29 18-39-9 1930-39 57-31-11
2000-09 45-60-0 2010-12 27-7
Undefeated Seasons: 4 (1968, 1985, 1989, 1990)
Winless Seasons: 2 (1938, 1945)
Last District Championship: 2000
Last Playoff Appearance: 2011
Playoff Record: 23-18-1
Last meeting: 2011, Gilmer won 35-20
Series Record: Gilmer leads 10-2-2
GILMER vs. Henderson
12 - 1919 - 6
0 - 1919 - 0
14 - 1921 - 6
51 - 1921 - 6
0 - 1922 - 0
35 - 1926 - 0
52 - 1927 - 0
101 - 1928 - 0
28 - 1932 - 0
14 - 1933 - 0
0 - 1996 - 14
0 - 1997 - 48 29 - 2010 – 28 35 - 2011 - 20
Gilmer has a 2 game winning streak over Henderson (Last loss: 48-0, 1997)
Gilmer has a 4 game winning streak at Longview’s Lobo Stadium (Last loss: 36-39 to Liberty-Eylau, 2006)
Gilmer has an 11 game district winning streak (last loss: 38-21 @ Carthage, 2010)
Gilmer has a 141 consecutive games scoring streak (last shutout: 10-0 @ Longview to Pleasant Grove, 2001)
Gilmer is 5-2 under Jeff Traylor in playoff games at Lobo Stadium
Jeff Traylor teams are 2-0 against Henderson
Jeff Traylor is 139-23 at Gilmer (86%)
Gilmer is 56-4 under Jeff Traylor in district games (93%)
Gilmer’s Jeff Traylor’s 86% winning percentage is the 2nd best among all active coaches in Texas
Gilmer has won more games (139) than any other 3A team in the state since 2000
Gilmer has either won the state championship or lost in the playoffs to the eventual state champion in 6 of the past 9 years
Gilmer is 112-14 under Jeff Traylor in regular season games (90%)
Gilmer is 90-6 (94%) in regular season games since 2003
Gilmer is averaging 422 total yards per game
Gilmer's 365 offensive plays consist of 179 passing attempts (49%) and 186 rushing attempts (51%)
Gilmer averages 193 yards per game passing (46%) and 229 yards per game rushing (54%)
Gilmer has rushing touchdowns by 5 different players
Gilmer has receiving touchdowns by 6 different players
Gilmer is ranked 14th in this week’s Associated Press Class 3A poll
Gilmer is ranked 15th in this week’s Class 3A Pigskinprep.com power rankings
Gilmer’s schedule is the 3rd toughest in Class 3A according to PigskinPrep.com
Henderson’s schedule is the 4th toughest in Class 3A according to PigskinPrep.com
Henderson is a 1 point favorite over Gilmer according to PigskinPrep.com
Did you know?
Gilmer’s 101-0 win over Henderson in 1928 is the largest winning margin in team history
Henderson scored a total of 18 points in their first 10 games against Gilmer dating from 1919-1933
Gilmer outscored Henderson 307-18 in their first 10 meetings from 1919-1933
Gilmer Soph. RB Kris Boyd’s 293 rushing yards were the most since Buddy Tate’s school record 305 yards against Clarksville in 1970, and 3rd most in school history
Gilmer Soph. RB Kris Boyd’s 5 rushing touchdowns tied the school record held by:
2007 Justin Johnson v. Liberty-Eylau
2009 Darian Godfrey v. Cuero
2010 Luke Turner v. Gladewater