#2 2004 (12.88)
#14 2006 (4.20) @ #11 1998 (6.09)
The 2006 team is all about passing. The 1998 team is all about rushing. In a battle of air vs ground, Harrell’s 421 yards were just too much for the 1998 squad. Ricky Williams did have over 100 total yards, but the Leach-led 2006 squad built up a 28-0 lead before 1998 was able to kick a field goal late in the 3rd.
Game 2 featured much more rushing, with Shannon Woods and Baron Batch combining for almost 160 yards. Ricky Williams had 163 rushing with 3 runs over 20 yards to earn player of the game. The difference came down to the QB’s
#20 1999 (-1.65) @ #5 2002 (9.53)
This will probably go down as the most lopsided matchup of the tournament. The 2002 team is very well-balanced, with Taurean Henderson leading the rushing attack and Kliff leading through the air. Taurean had 188 yards on 24 rushes with 2 scores as well as 6 receptions for 80 yards and a score. Kliff went 23-41 for 278 yards and 3 TD’s while the 1999 team only had 271 total yards of offense
Game 2 wasn’t much closer, but 1999 did outgain 2002 on the ground 175-138. Through the air was a different story as 1999 QB Rob Peters had 2 TD’s and 5 picks compared to Kliff’s 3 TD’s and a single pick. Wes Welker had 3 scores, 2 through the air and another on the ground.
#17 2015 (3.04) @ #8 2007 (8.28)
Mahomes vs Harrell was a bit lower scoring than you would assume it would be in the 1st game. Harrell and Crabtree were fantastic, with Crabtree gaining 190 yards receiving and 2 TD’s and player of the game honors. Harrell went 33-44 for 384 yards with 2 TD’s and a pick. Mahomes’ stats weren’t as pretty, going 19-31 for 249 yards and 2 TD’s with a pick. 2007 had 171 more yards of offense, but in the 4th quarter could only score field goals as 2015 came away with a narrow victory.
2007 came back with a vengeance, going up 14-3 early and taking a 21-5 lead. The quarterbacks had very similar completion and yardage stats, but Mahomes had no scores and 2 picks while Harrell had a pair of scores and no picks. Crabtree won player of the game again with 130 yards and 2 TD’s.
Game 3 came down to execution just as the 1st two games did, and Crabtree was a big part again. DeAndre Washington was a workhorse for 2015, gaining 154 yards on just 17 rushes with 3 TD’s. Mahomes had more yards than Harrell (314-281), but interceptions made the difference. 2015 had a 7-point lead going into the 4th, but Harrell led 2 drives for scores while Mahomes had a 3 and out and a pick.
Next week sophomore Harrell takes on Cumbie’s 2nd ranked 2004 team while junior Harrell takes on Kingsbury and a very good 2002 team.
Tomorrow we’ll look at the last divisional bracket which includes a record setting BJ Symons led 2003 squad.