Thursday night will be the 22nd and final 6A state championship game in football, as we know it. It’s been beaten to death, we know the story by now. Next year 6A will split into two divisions with the 16 largest schools being in 6A division 1 and the 16 smaller schools being in 6A division 2. It’s only fitting that in the last year of a 32 team 6A, that Jenks and Union do battle for the gold ball. When we look back at the history a 32 team 6A, Jenks and Union have combined for 19 of the 22 state championships. Then we have the streak. For the last 18 years, it’s only been Jenks and Union raising the gold ball. Since 1992, the first year that we had 6A as the largest classification, Jenks has 11 state championships, Union has 7 rings during that span as well. These two programs won’t stop anytime soon, next year they’ll be competing in division 1 and automatically are favorites to win that inaugural state championship. In my opinion, I believe that if Jenks and Union hadn’t dominated 6A over the last two decades, we wouldn’t have the split in 6A. Now’s not the time for that debate, now’s the time to sit back, and as Terrell Owens put it, get ya popcorn ready. One thing is certain, Jenks-Union for the 6A title, here we go again.
Jenks-Union Game Notes:
50th All Time Meeting (Both Regular Season and Playoffs)
Jenks leads the all time series with a record of 30-19 against rival Union. Before Bill Blankenship was at Union, the Redskin football program was dominated by the Trojans but things turned around in 1996. Since 1996, when the consecutive titles streak started, Jenks and Union have met 28 times and Jenks is 15-13 over Union during that time.
Get Ready For An Instant Classic
Jenks and Union have battled 49 different times and 24 of those occasions, the game has been decided by 7 points or less. I’m well aware that people in Oklahoma, excluding the Jenks and Union fan bases, are growing tired of the Jenks-Union dominance. You cannot debate this fact though, you’re entertained if you watch. It’s become the usual to take in a Jenks-Union game and see another classic. It’s almost become a watered down deal because it happens so often. Make no mistake about it, this is a special rivalry.
The Bigger The Stakes, The Bigger The Game
This will be the 50th all time meeting between the two rivals, it will also be the 12th time these two teams have met in the playoffs. Last year’s 41-10 Jenks victory in the semifinals over Union was the 3rd time they have met in that round. The other 8 times have been in the championship game. Overall in the playoffs, Jenks holds a 6-5 advantage after last year’s blowout win. This will be the 9th time these two teams clash for the 6A title, all of these 9 meetings have come in the last 16 years. It can’t get any closer then this. In the 8 meetings before Thursday’s clash, both teams are sporting 4-4 records. Jenks won the first 3 championship games, while Union won the last 3 title games.
Jenks Looking For Perfection
Jenks and Union have beaten each other up over the last two decades, so this may not be a surprise, or it might be. No team in 6A has gone unbeaten since 2002 when the Redskins went unbeaten and beat Broken Arrow to win their 1st state title under Bill Blankenship. We’ve had a lot of great Jenks and Union teams since that 2002 season, yet all of them lost at least 1 game. The Trojans have played tough competition this year, two nationally ranked opponents in Euless Trinity and Union, a borderline nationally ranked team in Broken Arrow, a top 5 team Westmoore (twice) and won them all.
Union’s Offensive Juggernaut
Union has been a force on offense ever since they’ve gotten back to full strength. They’ve scored more points then anyone in 6A football and have averaged 45 points per game on the season. I talk about how they’ve gotten back to full strength. After they got beat up in Texas against DeSoto and losing a heartbreaker to Jenks the next week, Union has rolled opponents. The next 11 games this offense has averaged 50 points per game and beaten those opponents by an average differential of 38 points. After scoring 20 points against DeSoto and 16 points against Jenks, Union’s lowest scoring output was 30 points 2 weeks ago against Broken Arrow in the semifinals. It’s going to be hard to score on this Jenks defense but Union is firing on all cylinders.
Does Defense Really Win Championships?
If that motto rings true, the Trojans will complete a perfect season and raise the gold ball for a second consecutive year. Jenks has the best defense in 6A and probably the state of Oklahoma this year. Before the season I had gone on record of saying this defense would be better then the ’97 Legion of Doom. It hasn’t lived up to that, but it’s a close second. The Trojans have only given up an average of 12 points per game. Jenks’ defensive unit started a little slow, giving up 20+ in 2 of their first 3 games. Since then, Jenks hasn’t given up 20 points at all. In fact, in the 10 games since week 3, Jenks is only giving up 9.4 points per game. Like I mentioned in the last note, Jenks will face a Union offense that is firing on all cylinders. Jenks will face it’s toughest test as a defense in the title game.
Here are the Roundup picks, for what it’s worth…
Michael: Jenks 31-Union 30
Matt: Jenks 28-Union 17