Written by SportsDayDFW.com
Denton Guyer spring football report: No matter 5A or 4A, team expects to play for state title in 2012
Editor's Note: This is the first in a series of reports focusing on Dallas-area football teams during their spring practices.
Team: Denton Guyer
How the 2011 season ended: After an overtime victory in the bi-district round, Guyer suffered an area-round exit in a 49-28 loss to Mansfield. The early exit was the first time in the program’s history to not reach at least the state semifinals in four playoff appearances.
Key returning starters: One of the area’s top sophomores from a year ago, quarterback Jerrod Heard returns for his junior season after putting up 2,286 yards and 28 touchdowns in 2011. Heard, who is beginning to garner serious attention from major college programs, is a dual threat quarterback, as he rushed for 650 yards and five scores last season. He took his lumps at times as a sophomore, but should be ready to help Guyer return to prominence with a drop back down to Class 4A. He’ll have one of his favorite receivers back as well, as Ellis Jefferson (6-4, 200) returns for his senior season. He was second on the team last year with 676 receiving yards.
Biggest questions facing team: Over the past few seasons, Guyer has established itself as one of the more stingy defenses in the area against the run. There have been multiple FBS signees on the defensive line, including three last season: Dan Kottman (San Diego State), Cody Henessee (Rice) and Diontre Thomas (Louisiana-Monroe). But for the upcoming year, there will be an entirely new group of starters as Connor Allen, Ian Kies, Dominic Pickering and converted tight end Thomas Ferguson will hope to continue Guyer’s tradition of stopping the run. The group is a bit undersized compared to previous years, but coach John Walsh said they are as strong and maybe more athletic.
“That’s the biggest question mark I have right now, is how fast they fill those shoes from the last four years,” Walsh said.
Notables: D.J. Breedlove, who was Guyer’s No. 2 back a year ago has had an excellent spring and seems poised for a big year. Breedlove, who will be a junior, has impressed the entire coaching staff, including Walsh: “He’s looking really good,” Walsh said. “He might be the best we’ve ever had.” Walsh said Breedlove has a rare mix of quickness, strength and great hands out of the backfield.
He said it: “I think if we’re going to be honest, the 5A [playoff] run is definitely harder than a 4A run. We’ve done both now. But there’s always someone there to knock you off if you aren’t ready. Our expectations haven’t changed. We expect to be playing for a state championship whether we’re in 5A or 4A.” – Denton Guyer head coach John Walsh
Spring football game info: May 17, 6 p.m. at Guyer HS
Full regular season schedule:
Aug. 30: vs. Cedar Hill, 7 p.m.
Sept. 6: at Colleyville Heritage, 7 p.m.
Sept. 14: at Flower Mound Marcus, 7 p.m.
Sept. 27: vs. Azle, 7 p.m.
Oct. 5: vs. Denton, 7 p.m.
Oct. 11: vs. Trophy Club Byron Nelson, 7 p.m.
Oct. 19: at Lake Dallas, 7 p.m.
Oct. 26: vs. Wichita Falls Rider, 7 p.m.
Nov. 2: vs. Wichita Falls, 7 p.m.
Nov. 9: at Fort Worth Brewer, 7 p.m.