Yoemen not looking past Jarrell

Last week, everyone’s attention was fully on the Cameron vs. Franklin district showdown.  Many statewide publications featured it as one of the the top games in the state, and it lived up to the billing as the Yoemen pulled out a dramatic 42-38 win to improve to 2-0 in 20-3A play.  


This week will be somewhat of a different storyline.  Jarrell has only won one ball game so far this year and has struggled out of the gate in 10-3A, failing to win a game in two attempts.   


“Hopefully our kids come out and take a step forward and not a step back,” said Yoemen head coach Tommy Brashear.  “We don’t feel you stay the same.  You are either getting better or getting worse.  We want to come out this week and work hard like we have the past two weeks and continue to get better.”


Jarrell had a very strong 2015 campaign, going 11-1 with the season coming to an end in the area round versus Crockett (42-28).  2016 has been a real struggle thus far as the Cougars sit at just 1-5.


Jarrell picked up a 42-19 win over Thorndale but has lost to Johnson City (42-7), Florence (34-27), Lexington (76-7), Academy (29-21) and Troy (38-9).  


A lot of the success in 2015 was thanks to quarterback Tony Brown, which was the district MVP.  He is now gone, but over half of his teammates have returned.



Much like the Yoemen, Jarrell is going to operate out of the spread attack and will try to move the ball around as much as possible.  


“They run the ball fairly well and they pass the ball pretty well,” said Brashear.  “I can tell they want to be a balanced team and they spread the ball around nicely.  They have not been able to get it together for whatever reason this year, but they have some talent over there.”


The Cougars have seven starters returning from 2015 and in six games this season have averaged 18.6 points per contest.  That is down from last year’s 36.4.  


QB Hunter Loans is a first-year starter while Hunter Hernandez returns to take over at running back.  The offensive line will be headlined by left tackle Jarod McBeth.  Right tackle Byron RoaMartinez was a second team all-district member a year ago.



Defensively, Jarrell also runs the same 3-4 defense as the Yoemen.  


“They do a lot more man-to-man coverage in the secondary and some man-free coverage in the secondary,” said Brashear.  “They have some pretty good athletes to do that.  I don’t know if they will do that to us, but that is what they like to do.”


The Cougars, with just 19.8 points given up per game, were fairly stingy in 2015.  That has not been the case here in 2016 as that number has ballooned to nearly 40 points per contest.  


The defense lost a good portion of their all-district starters, but Hunter Hernandez returns as an honorable mention all-district selection from his defensive back position.  


Not looking ahead

It is easy to look ahead at some points in a season, especially in games of this nature where the Yoemen appear to be heavily favorited.  However, Coach Brashear and his team understand they cannot get caught looking ahead and must focus on this moment.   


“We are focused right now,” said Brashear.  “That is what we talk about with the kids.  We are focused on beating Jarrell and preparing for Jarrell.  We are just taking it one week at a time.  It’s a tough district and you can’t have a let down any week.  You certainly don’t want to have a let down this week.”



Standings: 1. Cameron Yoe (2-0); 2. Rockdale (1-0); 3. Academy (1-1); 3. Franklin (1-1); 3. Troy (1-1); 6. McGregor (0-1); 7. Jarrell (0-2).


Week seven games: Jarrell (0-2) Vs. Cameron Yoe (2-0); Rockdale (1-0) Vs. Troy (1-1); Franklin (1-1) Vs. McGregor (0-1).

Kickoff for Friday’s game at Yoe Field in set for 7:30 p.m.  It will also be youth football night.