It’s a big weekend for both high school and college football in Texas, what with the Battle of the Lakes in Austin on Friday and the Red River Rivalry/Showdown/Shootout in the Cotton Bowl on Saturday.
Can’t wait until then? Here are some Thursday night games to tide you over, including a handful of ranked high school teams in action.
Louisiana Monroe at Texas State, 8:15 pm, ESPNU
First-year coach Jake Spavital definitely took his Bobcats into the deep end the pool to open the season. The sink-or-swim strategy has paid off. After losses at Texas A&M, to Wyoming and at surprisingly unbeaten and ranked SMU, the Bobcats have won two in a row with eyes on evening their record against a ULM team that dropped a heartbreaking 45-44 decision to Florida State. Quarterback Gresch Jensen passed for two scores and ran for a third in last week’s upset of then-9th ranked Nicholls. Top tackler Bryan London II missed most of the Nicholls game with an injury but should be back in the lineup against Monroe.
Katy Tompkins vs Katy Mayde Creek, 7 pm, Texan Live
Tompkins (5-1, 1-1), which climbed into the rankings despite suffering its first loss of the season (35-30 to Katy), looks to get off the deck against unbeaten Mayde Creek (5-0 1-0). Tompkins quarterback Jaden Milroe had a massive game in the loss to Katy, passing for 405 yards and three touchdowns. Mayde Creek brings a perfect record into the game, led by junior running back Julius Loughridge, who averages 142 yards per game.
Denton Guyer vs Keller Timber Creek
Guyer (4-1, 1-1) slips to 17th in the 6A rankings following last week’s showdown loss to Southlake Carroll. The Wildcats will look to claw some of that frustration away against Timber Creek (1-4, 0-2), which hasn’t won a District 5-6A game yet. Kaedric Cobbs leads Guyer’s rushing attack at 162 yards per game while Eli Stowers has thrown seven touchdown passes over his last two games. Timber Creek gives up 35 points per game.
Frisco Lone Star vs Frisco Independence
Top-ranked Lone Star (5-0, 2-0) enjoys the Thursday night spotlight for a second week in a row, taking on fellow unbeaten Independence (5-0, 2-0). The Rangers have cruised since knocking off then-top ranked Highland Park, looking every bit the top team in 5A-D1 in the process. Marvin Mims and Garret Rangel continue to lead a ruthlessly efficient offense for the Rangers. Independence averages a gaudy 600 yards per game, led by Braylon Braxton’s 1,695 yards passing and 25 touchdowns. Khiyon Wafer and Zhighlil Mcmillan have caught 51 passes for 1,200 yards and 21 touchdowns between them.
Texarkana Texas vs Mesquite Poteet
If Poteet (2-3, 1-0) or Texarkana Texas (3-3, 0-2) have postseason aspirations coming out of District 7-5A-1, the time has arrived to act on them. Poteet has won two straight since starting the season 0-3, including a big district win last week over Sherman. A taming of the Tigers would maintain momentum in the postseason chase. Running back Seth McGowan leads a balanced Poteet offense. Texas High needs to figure some things out defensively after allowing 48 first half points to McKinney North last week.
Spring Westfield vs Aldine Eisenhower
In the last two weeks, 12th ranked Westfield (4-1, 2-0) has claimed bragging rights amongst its fellow Spring ISD rivals. Now the Mustangs set their sights on the District 16-6A crown. Westfield has relied on its defense, which allows just 8 points per game, led by Dyllon Peavy. Eisenhower looks to bounce back from a frustrating 32-29 loss to MacArthur last week. Eisenhower (1-4, 1-1) led 14-0 in the second quarter before MacArthur rallied.
Klein Oak vs Klein Forest
Following a pair of eye-opening wins, Klein Oak (5-1, 3-1) jumped into the 6A rankings at No. 25 and looks to make it four straight wins. Receiver Dwight McGlohtern Jr. had seven catches for 124 yards and two scores in a 2-point win over Klein Collins. Oak had to recover an onside kick after Collins scored with 1:49 left to close within two. Forest (0-5, 0-3) may not provide the same challenge that The Woodlands or Klein Collins have, but the Panthers can ill afford to take a sideways step.
El Paso Chapin vs El Paso Bel Air
Chapin (0-5) found the non-district going rough but hopes to start a new trend as District 1-5A-1 play begins Thursday against Bel Air (3-2). Turnovers have been Chapin’s big problem thus far. The Huskies quarterbacks have combined to throw eight interceptions without a scoring strike. Bel Air has had no such struggles, averaging nearly 580 yards of offense per game led by Adrian Parsons’ 1,632 yards and 23 touchdowns through the air.
Fort Bend Marshall vs Houston Waltrip
Ever since 7th-ranked Marshall (5-1, 3-1) dropped a heartbreaker to Manvel in a showdown that opened District 11-5A-2 play, the Buffalos have been thundering through the competition. Wins over Sterling and Willowridge have come by an average of 42 points. Devon Achane remains electric. He ran for 215 yards on just six carries against Willowridge. Waltrip (1-5, 1-3) blanked Sharpston 55-0 last Saturday to earn its first win.
Bay City vs Houston Fulshear, 7 pm, Texan Live
One of the state’s lone 4A Thursday games will see someone get their first win of the season. Fulshear (0-6, 0-2) played its closest game of the season last week, falling 33-29 to El Campo as the Ricebirds’ Donny Holloway thwarted a last-ditch Chargers pass into the end zone. Bay City (0-5, 0-2) appeared primed for a breakthrough last week, playing Needville to a 27-27 tie through three quarters led by Rodney Mitchell’s two touchdown runs, but Needville outscored the Blackcats 21-0 in the fourth quarter to pull away.