2012 Realignment – Welcome To 5A

Seventeen schools officially made the jump from 4A to 5A this morning.  Additionally, three new schools jump right into the state’s top classification.

Most Notable Additions:

Denton Ryan Raiders

District: 5-5A (previously 4-4A)
Enrollment: 2125
2011 Record: 12-1, 4A Division 1 Regional Semifinalist
Coach: Joey Florence

* Opened in 1987, previously in 5A (’94-’97, ’04, ’05)
* Two time 4A State Champs (’01, ’02), Five time 4A State Finalists (’00, ’01,’02, ’03, ’10)

Analysis: Despite graduating all-everything defensive lineman Mario Edwards Jr. (Florida St.), Ryan is one of those programs that reloads on a yearly basis.  Region 1 is a tough nut to crack, but Ryan will certainly have its say in the regional title.

Waco Midway Panthers

District: 8-5A (previously 8-4A)
Enrollment: 2127
2011 Record: 12-3, 4A Division 1 State Finalist
Coach: Terry Gambill

* Opened in 1987, first time in 5A
* 4A State Finalists (2011), 45-9 in the last four seasons

Analysis: A very young Panther team took Lake Travis down to the bitter end in last year’s 4A Division 1 final.  An eye-opening 17 starters (8 offense, 9 defense) and roughly 75% of lettermen return for the 2012 season.  It’s hard to imagine these guys not enjoying a seamless transition to 5A.

Lake Travis Cavaliers

District: 15-5A (previously 25-4A)
Enrollment: 2217
2011 Record: 16-0, 4A Division 1 State Champs
Coach: Hank Carter

* Opened in 1982, first time in 5A
* Five time 4A State Champs (’07, ’08, ’09, ’10, ’11)

Analysis: The Cavaliers come right in and instantly become one of the favorites to claim a state title.  Headliners QB Baker Mayfield and RB Varshaun Nixon both return.  This group is a machine that is currently on a run that no one in Texas can match.  That being said, they do take a step up in week-to-week competition and depth come playoff time.

Manvel Mavericks

District: 22-5A (previously 24-4A)
Enrollment: 2189
2011 Record: 15-1, 4A Division 2 State Finalist
Coach: Kirk Martin

* Opened in 2008, first time in 5A
* 34-15 since opening, 26-4 in last two seasons

Analysis: The Mavericks are located in an area deep with talent.  Seven starters return from last year’s group, including QB Shane McCarley.  Making the playoffs isn’t a question with Manvel and Pearland being the clear favorites of the new 22-5A.  They’re an instant contender for a Region 3 title and possibly more depending on other key positions.

Smithson Valley Rangers

District: 25-5A (previously 27-4A)
Enrollment: 2165
2011 Record: 10-2, 4A Division 1 Area Finalist
Coach: Larry Hill

* Opened in 1976, previously in 5A (’02-’09)
* Three time State Finalists (’01, ’02,’04)
* Made playoffs in seven of last eights seasons in 5A, including four state semifinals, and two state finals.

Analysis: A familiar foe returns to 5A.  The Rangers enjoyed an extremely successful run at this level from 2002-2009 and we expect more of the same this time around out of Region 4.  Leading 40+ returning lettermen in the Fall will be RB Lawrence Mattison (2,000 yards, 27 touchdowns).

Moving Up from 4A:

* Previously in 5A

Brownsville Veterans Memorial, Carrollton Turner*, Denton Ryan*, Keller Timber Creek, Killeen*, La Joya Juarez-Lincoln, Lake Travis, Manvel, McKinney*, New Braunfels Canyon, Pflugerville Hendrickson, Richardson Pearce*, Rockwall*, Rockwall Heath, Smithson Valley*, Waco Midway, Weslaco East

New Schools (3):

Clear Falls, Edinburg Vela, Round Rock Cedar Ridge