Defending Champion: Jenks
All eyes are on the defending champs as the playoffs roll around. No team in 6A has gone undefeated since 2002 when Union finished 14-0. That’s what’s on the line for this Jenks team as they embark on their road to Boone Pickens Stadium. The Trojans have dominated games and won close games at the same time. Before the season we were saying this defense would be better then the ’97 Legion of Doom defense. That was a little too far of a stretch. The defense has been one of the best in the state. It’s been the offense that has been so surprising. Led by a sophomore at quarterback in Cooper Nunley, this offense has been able to put up points when they need to. I’ve been very impressed with what Jenks has been able to do on offense throughout the season. Add that to one of the best defenses in the state and you have the heavy favorite in these 6A playoffs. I like the Trojans going back to back. Keep reading and find out how they’ll do it.
1st Round Game to Watch:
Michael: Booker T Washington AT Broken Arrow
So. Much. D1. Talent. We have college talent galore in this first round match-up. The Hornets will travel to Broken Arrow and I believe this will be the most entertaining 1st round match-up. Anytime you can get the collection of raw talent that both teams have on the same field, expect fireworks. We might not see these two teams play for a while since the Hornets will be playing in 6A’s division 2 starting next season. Just one more reason to get out and watch what should be a very good game to open up the playoffs. I could see the winner of this game going all the way to the semifinals. Once you get to the semi’s, anything can happen. Of course the question always remains, when will Broken Arrow win a state title? Well, the road to Stillwater and a possible championship starts with a bang for the Tigers as they host an athletic BTW team. I want to see how Broken Arrow’s offense with QB Coleman Key and RB Devon Thomas play against the best DE duo in the state in Jordan Brailford and Jonathan Willis of BTW. If Brailford and Willis can force Key into some mistakes and bottle up Thomas by limiting the big play, the Hornets will have an opportunity to be in this game in the end.
Matt: Edmond Santa Fe AT Midwest City
These two teams met up in the regular season and Midwest City came out on top 3-0 over the Wolves. Santa Fe is without their star quarterback Justice Hansen and they will be without him for the rest of the season, which might be just one more game. This game is very simple to breakdown, if Midwest City can score over 20 points then they win. That is a big task as this offense has struggled this year. When Midwest City puts up over 20 points they have only lost one game. I think that Midwest City wins a close defensive game similar to season opener back in September.
Michael: BTW Making The Semifinals
Similar to the 4A playoffs, I’ll give full disclosure here, I don’t have this upset happening, I’m going with the chalk in 6A. I wouldn’t be surprised though if this upset happened. The Hornets are playing good football right now and their toughest match-up in the first two rounds will be against BA. Like I talked about in the 1st round game to watch, if the BTW defense can hold BA’s offensive playmakers then I like their chances. The Hornets will get the winner of Mustang-Norman North in quarters if they pull the upset on Broken Arrow. After taking on a top 5 team in Broken Arrow, playing either of those teams will be a relief. If the Hornets get to that quarterfinal game, I think they’ll roll to a semifinal appearance in their last year playing against these 6A teams. However, in the semifinals BTW will run into a Union team and the road will end there. The Redskins already ran away from Booker T a couple weeks ago and I expect much of the same if the Hornets get there.
Matt: Mustang Over Norman North
The only upset I have is Mustang over Norman North, which in all honesty isn’t too much of an upset. Based on seeds, yes it is, Norman North is a district champion and Mustang is a 4 seed. However, Norman North has been a shell of themselves since the loss of star quarterback and Alabama commit David Cornwell to a torn ACL. I think that Norman North will not be able to score enough points to beat Mustang and they will not be able to overcome the loss of Cornwell. Last year’s runner up goes down in the 1st round.
Michael: Union-Broken Arrow & Jenks-Lawton
Union makes it to the semi’s. Same goes for Jenks. Doesn’t matter who they play, these two are in the semi’s. I’m pretty sure it’s written somewhere in the OSSAA handbook that Jenks and Union really start their seasons in the semifinals. I might be wrong on that one but Jenks and Union will have no problem getting there again. Any objections? Okay, moving on. These other two teams are interesting stories and will make for can’t miss semifinal match-ups the night after Thanksgiving. Broken Arrow will get the win over Booker T Washington in the 1st round. I’ve broken down this match-up in the the above sections. The Tigers will get enough production from their offense to put up enough points to advance. BA will face the winner of the Mustang-Norman North game and in my opinion, it doesn’t matter who they face, they get the win. The Tigers will have to travel to the west side to face that winner but BA has proven they can travel and get big wins. Earlier this season they traveled over to Arkansas and beat Arkansas power Bentonville. In week 10 they traveled to Moore and beat Westmoore. Broken Arrow has no problem in the quarterfinals after a dog fight with Booker T Washington in the playoff opener. The Tigers will get big brother in the semifinals. Big brother in this scenario is Union. Broken Arrow has done a great job over the last decade to make this rivalry closer but still have struggled to get results in the win/loss column. Union just has their number, and until Broken Arrow does it on a big stage, you have to give the Redskins the edge. Broken Arrow will make it closer then their 38-21 loss in week 3 but not enough to overcome that mental hurdle that BA has yet to achieve.
We know one semifinalist is going to be Jenks. I’m pretty sure it’s getting to the point where the only sure thing now is death, taxes, and the Trojans going to the semi’s. It’ll be Jenks’ 9th trip the semifinals in the last 10 seasons. The last time they didn’t make it there was 2005. I don’t see Owasso or the winner of the Midwest City-Edmond Santa Fe game giving the Trojans much trouble. Jenks rolls to the semifinals. Now we have some fun. Lawton already got their 1st round win when they beat Yukon in game that was closer then most people thought it would be. Lawton got up big and just let the Millers back into the game. I don’t see that happening in the quarterfinals. The Wolverines will get the winner of the Westmoore-Sand Springs game at home. I think Westmoore could pose a threat the Wolverines but once Lawton gets up, I think they’ll close out the game. Last night’s near meltdown to Yukon might have been the worst thing for the Westmoore-Sand Springs winner if they wanted to upset Lawton. Lawton gets a big win into the semi’s setting up a battle of two undefeated teams between the Wolverines and Jenks. I think in some other years, Lawton’s team this season is good enough to win a state title. Not this year. Jenks is too strong and their offense has played better then I ever thought they could this season. The Trojans are going to get to another state title game with the opportunity to defend their title. Lawton is going to keep this close and don’t be surprised if the game goes down to the wire. Three years ago Lawton pushed Union in the semifinals with the Redskins escaping after two overtimes. I know this is going to upset a lot of people, but it’s the usual suspects in the title game. Get ready for another instant classic. Jenks and Union will be meeting for the title.
Matt: Union-Broken Arrow & Jenks-Lawton
Union will go thru Sapulpa in the first round without too much of a problem. In the quarterfinals I have them facing Edmond Memorial who is a decent team but not on the level of the Union Redskins. In the Semifinals I have Union against a Broken Arrow team that they already beat in the regular season by a score of 38-21. This Semifinal game will be closer mark it down. Broken Arrow starts the playoffs with a tough Booker T Washington team, that due to the tie breaker with Sand Springs fell to third in the district. The key for Broken Arrow is to keep their running back Devon Thomas healthy. Due to him being injured so much this season, the Oklahoma State commit has only rushed for 647 yards and just 2 touchdowns. The Tigers do have one thing working in their favor as they go into these playoffs and that’s the production of their quarterback. Coleman Key has found his groove and has this offense rolling. Key threw for 2,194 yards and 27 touchdowns on the season. I think Broken Arrow gets thru Booker T and then Mustang in the quarterfinals. Union beats Broken Arrow in a tough, hard fought ball game.
For the Trojans, their first round opponent will be Owasso, who they played in the regular season and disposed of 45-28. Jenks all year long has put away teams in the second half and in their first round game I think that Jenks will go into the half up big and have no problem with the Rams. In the second round I have Jenks matched up against Midwest City. This game will be the most defensive game in all of the playoffs, Midwest City’s defense has a better defense statistically than Jenks. They’ve only given up 118 points on the year. Jenks isn’t far off only giving up 123 points for the season, plus they played a much more difficult schedule. I see this game going well for Jenks my prediction 24-0 Jenks. I don’t think Midwest City’s offense will be able to score which has been a problem all year. Now we get to undefeated Lawton, Lawton is a team that is so far away they don’t get much attention, but they should. Lawton is led by running back Michael Warren who is the best running back in the state in my opinion. Watch out for Warren behind this huge offensive line to make some plays against this Jenks defense. There is zero doubt in my mind that Lawton will give the Trojans a test and it will be very interesting to watch the offensive line for Lawton against the defensive line of Jenks. Lawton squeaked by on Thursday night against Yukon, in a game that they where leading 35-7 thru the middle of the third quarter. They gave up some points and turned the ball over but Lawton squeaked out the win and did what you have to do in the playoffs, win and survive. Lawton will have a huge test when they face Westmoore in the second round, I have the Jaguars beating Sand Springs in the 1st round. Westmoore will be the biggest test that Lawton has had all year long. I think they find a way to pull out a victory over the Jags and then they will go on to face the defending champs. This is a match up that I’ve been looking forward to since Lawton impressed me in wins against Southmoore and Edmond Santa Fe. Jenks will be very hard to beat and Lawton will need just about everything to go their way. Jenks wins but Lawton has a chance, this will be a ballgame that is going to be a lot closer than most people think.
Michael: Jenks Over Union
The dual dynasty continues. 18 years will have gone by and nobody except Jenks or Union will be raising the gold ball. Think about that for just a second. All the seniors in high school this year, for the most part, have spent their entire life with only Jenks and Union being the football champ in 6A. Remarkable run, and it’s only going to continue, no slowing down here. I know the deal where whoever wins the regular season match-up loses in the rematch in the playoffs. I don’t buy into that and neither do either of these teams. The Trojans are the defending champs and the Redskins are hungry for revenge. Remember last season, Union had a streak of 4 titles in a row going before getting blasted in the semifinals by the Trojans. Jenks won the regular season meeting with a miraculous play in the final minute. Trust me, Union doesn’t want revenge for that, they want revenge for last season’s semifinal loss. Jenks beat Union and beat Union bad. I expect another chapter in the great book that is the Jenks-Union rivalry to be written after this one. It’s so hard to breakdown this game or make a prediction because anytime you think something will happen, it doesn’t. Anytime you think something WON’T happen, it does. I just hope it lives up to the expectations but I do believe the Trojans’ defense will lead them once again to a state championship. They didn’t live up to the preseason hype but they still produced one of the better units in the state. Defense wins titles and I think they get the stops they need to get the win. Hopefully this championship win isn’t decided until the final seconds. That’s not too much to ask is it? Jenks wins a thriller to go back to back as the 6A champ.
Matt: Jenks Over Union
This game will be another hard fought game between the two best teams in Oklahoma. Jenks got Union in the final seconds in the Backyard Bowl on a deep pass to Dylan Harding. I don’t know if this game will have a winning touchdown in the last minutes but I wouldn’t put it past them. I have Jenks winning the 6A title because of one thing and one thing only, DEFENSE! Defense wins championships and I think defense wins Jenks the title this year.
Enjoy the playoffs everybody, I hope you’ve enjoyed our week long playoff preview. Don’t forget to tune in every Saturday morning to 97.1FM, 96.1FM and online at sportsanimalradio.com to listen to the High School Roundup. Our next two shows will be from 11AM-1PM instead of our normal 8AM start time.