Everman is always a talent-laden team that likes to run the ball, and then run it some more and is always full of athletes.
This year will be no different for the Bulldogs, who rolled through District 8-4A last season on their way to the Class 4A Division II state semifinals.
Their closest district game last year came in a 42-14 win over Crowley -- that's what I call domination.
The Bulldogs even beat what many would consider their biggest challenge for the district title on an annual basis, Stephenville, 56-3, and the Yellowjackets went four rounds deep in the playoffs in the same bracket.
Those are really the only two teams to speak of out of this district. Everman returns nine starters -- five on offense and four on defense, including a couple of bonafide man-beasts in defensive end Aaron Bellazin and safety Barry Browning, who had 113 tackles and three interceptions last year. Bellazin had 125 tackles and eight sacks and was the leader of the stout defense that allowed a stingy 10.5 points per game in the regular season.
At Stephenville, coach Joseph Gillespie is trying to get the Yellowjackets back up to par in the tradition department, and made great headway last season after a rough 0-2 start (losses to Aledo and Denton Guyer) and the aforementioned drubbing at the hands of Everman. Either way, they still found themselves playing in December, which is always a good thing.
Things could be rough for the Jackets this year, especially early on when they once again face Aledo and Denton Guyer in nondistrict play, and have to do so with not one offensive starter back from last season. The defense, which returns five starters, should be a stout unit though, and will have to be the backbone of the team early on.
Offensive MVP: Blake Dixon, RB, Mansfield Timberview
Defensive MVP: Aaron Bellazin, DE/LB, Everman
Game of the Year: Everman at Stephenville, Week 7