Class A powers moving up the ranks
District 2A-1 looks a lot like the Class A playoff bracket from last season. Three teams (Hennessey, Tonkawa and Watonga) have joined the district after reaching at least the quarterfinals in Class A.
Oklahoma Christian joins the district as well after reaching the Class A playoffs, while 2A mainstays Alva and Perry also loom in an ultra-competitive district.
Coaches were split between Hennessey and Tonkawa as to who should be the favorite entering the season. The Bucs beat the Eagles in the semifinals en route to going undefeated and winning the Class A championship.
Warren with one more year
Oklahoma Christian took a hit because of graduation, but one familiar name returns: quarterback Jack Warren.
Warren will be entering his third year as a starter and has seen just about everything for the Saints.
"We're a little young, so it's going to be a new challenge," Warren said. "I like where we're heading, and it will be fun to be in 2A again."
Warren's main target will be wide receiver Skyler Sikes.
Flynn a name to watch for Eagles
Watonga's Trevon Hartfield became a name to watch last year, and the Eagles might have another gem in wide receiver Javis Flynn.
As a sophomore, Flynn had 42 catches for 530 yards and five touchdowns.
"He's a difference maker," coach Shannon Grimes said. "He grew up last year, and we expect big things from him."
Flynn was also a star on defense with 112 tackles and four interceptions. And despite being just a sophomore, he was named to the all-district team.
Bucs offensive line impressive
After winning the title last year, Tonkawa isn't expected to drop off too much. One big reason is, of course, star running back Jake Love.
The senior has committed to Kansas and will most likely play linebacker at college. He is also a star in wrestling and track.
But another big reason is because of the solid offensive line. The Bucs return four experienced offensive linemen to open up the holes for Love.
There is no question at quarterback for Alva as Devery Vanlandingham threw for more than 1,600 yards and 13 touchdowns last season. ...The same can be said for the Perry running game. The Maroons return Brian Yenor, who rushed for more than 1,500 yards and 13 touchdowns last year.
District 2A-1 coaches' poll 1. Hennessey (13-1)* 2. Tonkawa (15-0)* 3. Oklahoma Christian (8-3)* 4. Watonga (10-3)* 5. Perry (5-5) 6. Alva (4-6) 7. Chisholm (3-7)* * Denotes new to district 2009 record in parentheses