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District 3A-6 football preview: Coaches in favor of toughened-up district

With this year’s district realignments comes a tougher District 3A-6. The district traded Kellyville, Henryetta and Inola for Checotah, Hilldale and Tulsa Rogers.
BY JONATHAN GRECO, Staff Writer, jgreco@opubco.com Modified: August 11, 2014 at 5:06 pm •  Published: August 11, 2014
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With this year’s district realignments comes a tougher District 3A-6.

The district traded Kellyville, Henryetta and Inola for Checotah, Hilldale and Tulsa Rogers, giving the district four teams that had at least 10 wins that reached at least the second round of the playoffs last year.

Coaches of teams that were part of the district a season ago — Victory Christian, Beggs, Okmulgee and Morris — like tougher division. Not only does the tougher district schedule make every week “a fight to survive,” as Beggs coach Lee Blankenship said, but it will help make teams battle tested going into the postseason.

“Thankfully our district is tougher; most guys don’t want that but we need that,” said Brent Marley, who coaches defending district champion Victory Christian. “Maybe we’ll be in some battles and be more battle tested by the time we get into a second round type ballgame or first round or third round, whatever it may be.”

VICTORY CHRISTIAN RETURNS OFFENSIVE KEYS

Sophomores aren’t supposed to do what Victory Christian quarterback Keats Calhoon did last year.

Calhoon, now a 6-2, 180-pound junior, led all of Oklahoma with 3,350 yards, completed 74.5 percent of his passes and tossed 37 touchdowns while throwing only six interceptions in 2013. In 2012, Keats threw for 2,512 yards and 17 touchdowns.

Coming off a District 3A-6 title, the Conquerors are poised to for another run at a title. Victory Christian returns a core of Calhoon’s top targets, including senior Jacoby Hicks (55 receptions, 916 yards, 13 touchdowns), junior Jon Michael Terry (23, 523, five), senior Emmanuel Adeshakon and senior P.J. McLachlin (73, 1,090, 12).

“(Calhoon) knows the guys and they know him,” Marley said. “For timing purposes and when they’re going to break it off or what they might do in a crunch.

“You just get to know people and get comfortable with what they’re going to do.”

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