Class 5A Rankings, Notes and Picks, Week 2, 2023

Class 5A Rankings, Notes and Picks, Week 2, 2023

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Week 2, 2023

Copyright Seventy Seven's Publishing

1. LR Parkview (1-0)
2. Pine Bluff (1-0)
3. Shiloh Christian (1-0)
4. Mills (2-0)
5. Valley View (1-1)
6. Hot Springs (2-0)
7. Joe T. Robinson (1-1)
8. Farmington (1-1)
9. Camden Fairview (1-1)
10. White Hall (1-1)
11. Prairie Grove (1-0)
12. Nettleton (1-1)
13. Magnolia (2-0)
14. Wynne (0-1)
15. Morrilton (1-1)
16. Harrison (1-1)
17. Southside (2-0)
18. Alma (1-1)
19. Maumelle (2-0)
20. Texarkana (2-0)
21. HS Lakeside (2-0)
22. Batesville (0-2)
23. Beebe (2-0)
24. Pea Ridge (2-0)
25. Brookland (1-1)
26. Dardanelle (1-1)
27. Forrest City (0-1)
28. Vilonia (0-2)
29. Hope (0-1)
30. Paragould (1-1)
31. Watson Chapel (0-2)
32. Clarksville (0-2)
33. De Queen (0-2)

WEEK 2 PREDICTIONS (favored team in ALL CAPS)


LAST WEEK correctly predicted 20 of 25 games (80 percent). has correctly predicted 42 of 52 games (81 precent) this year.



4A No. 3 Rivercrest (1-1) at NO. 5 VALLEY VIEW (1-1) Expect a close game. Valley View has won 6 of its 9 meetings vs. Rivercrest, including the past 2 years by a combined 9 points. Valley View notched a 12-point win over Poplar Bluff, Mo., a week ago. Senior QB Carson Turley completed 19 of 30 passes for 207 yards and a 3 touchdowns and ran 18 times for 122 yards. Senior T.J. Starks caught 6 passes for 79 yards and 1 TD, and Zahki Ervin hauled in 5 balls for 64 yards. Rivercrest led Mills 20-14 in the second quarter last week, but scored just 6 points in the second half of a 59-34 setback. Versatile senior Michael Rainer ran 14 times for 91 yards and 1 TD and caught 4 passes for 85 yards and 1 TD. Senior Koby Turner ran 7 times for 125 yards and 1 TD. Junior safety Joe Louis Ralph racked up 10 tackles, while sophomore Jayden Young made 9 stops. Senior defense end Wyatt Lancaster made 8 tackles, 1 sack and registered 4 QB pressures.



Watson Chapel (0-2) at NO. 2 PINE BLUFF (1-0): Pine Bluff plays its first home game. Zebra senior receiver Austin Dendy scored 4 TDs, including an 89-yard kickoff return, in last week's 45-13 win over LR Central. Senior Courtney Crutchfield caught 3 passes for 165 yards and 2 TDs and ran 12 yards for another TD. Watson Chapel rides an 11-game losing streak, but the Wildcats played better in last week's 38-22 setback at Class 4A McGehee. Wildcats QB Malachi Rayford and RB Kameron Hobbs played well, Coach Maurice Moody says.


Beebe (2-0) at NO.  5 MILLS (2-0): Beebe has won 4 of the past 6 over Mills, but the Comets won 34-21 last season. Mills beat Rivercrest 55-34 last week, despite being penalized for 246 yards. Mills senior QB Achillies Ringo completed 25 of 30 passes for 401 yards and 4 TDs, while senior Akyell Madison (transfer from Watson Chapel) caught 10 passes for 194 yards and 3 TDs. Beebe held talented Newport to 85 yards offense and forced 2 turnovers in a 42-8 victory.


Vilonia (0-2) at MORRILTON (1-1): Morrilton has won 13 of the past 20 in the series. Morrilton's defense improved last week, holding Clarksville to just more than 100 yards in a 35-7 win. QB Maddox Berry threw a school-record 5 TD passes, 2 each to Andrew Rhoden and Jamarcus Sandidge. Vilonia surrendered 402 yards in last week's 39-6 loss to rival Greenbrier. Junior Cadien Gipson ran 22 times for 79 yards.

Maumelle (2-0) at
WHITE HALL (1-1): These teams have split the past 8 meetings, with White Hall winning last season 44-24. Maumelle won at Batesville last week (41-27), behind sophomore QB Andrew Bjork's 2 TD passes and 1 rushing TD. White Hall lost to Warren 34-27 last week, allowing the winning TD in the final seconds. QB Noah Smith ran for a TD and threw a TD pass in the setback, while Jayden Smith ran for 2 TDs.


OPEN Joe T. Robinson is open.


4A NO. 1 MALVERN (1-1) at HS Lakeside (2-0): Class 4A Game of the Week.

These are former conference foes, and HS Lakeside has won 4 of the past 7 in the series. HS Lakeside is off to a 2-0 start after winning 2 games last year. Rams senior A.J. Howard returned an interception 75 yards for a TD in the first quarter to jump start last week's 36-31 triumph over Class 6A Russellville. Senior QB Jacob Hermosillo threw the winning 8-yard TD pass to senior Skylar Purifoy with 4 minutes left. HS Lakeside senior Caleb Villines made a 35-yard field goal in the first half. Malvern beat Hot Springs County rival Glen Rose by 31 points last week in the Brick Bowl. Senior Jalen Dupree ran 25 times for 257 yards and 3 TDs, while Dyelon Caradine caught 5 passes for 137 yards and 2 TDs from first-year QB Sedrick Allen. Senior Romere Bennett led the Leopards defense with 11 tackles.


Class 4A No. 8 Arkadelphia (0-2) at TEXARKANA (2-0): Arkadelphia looks to avoid its first 0-3 start since 2018 (started 0-5 before winning 10 straight). The Badgers lost to Class 5A Hot Springs 24-7 a week ago after trailing 3-0 in the third quarter. Arkadelphia's defense allowed just 253 yards. DE Whit Alderson and LB Chase Vantilborg played well, Coach Trey Schucker says. Texarkana beat Hamburg 38-7 last week, in a game that was scheduled on Wednesday. Razorback QB Nate Wall passed for 242 yards and 3 TDs, while Courtland Loudermill ran 19 times for 231 yards and 2 TDs. Rodney Kindley led the D with 9 tackles, while Malek Dangerfield had 7 tackles and 2 interceptions.


Hope (0-1) at 4A ASHDOWN (2-0): Ashdown has won 7 straight over Hope by a combined 314-108 (average of 45-15). Ashdown junior Darnell Williams returned a punt for a TD in last week's 41-7 win over De Queen. Junior Braedon Walton (11 catches, 355 yards and 4 TDs in 2023) has emerged as a threat at receiver. Hope trailed Nashville 14-7 in the 3rd quarter last week before losing 24-21. Senior QB Tyler Patterson completed 24 of 30 passes for 300 yards and 2 TDs and ran for a TD.


4A NASHVILLE (1-1) at De Queen (0-2): Nashville has won 21 of the past 23 in the series. Nashville turned to its defense last week to slide past Hope 24-21. Senior DL Omari Benson made 6 tackles and 3 sacks, while sophomore Zaccheus Harris had 3 sacks. Junior CB Roochie Wiley had 6 tackles and returned a fumble for a TD. All-league RB Tre Hopkins was held out last week due to injuries but will play this week, Coach Mike Volarvich says. Sophomore Tucker Dixon filled in at RB (25 carries, 152 yards), while junior J'Marion Conway gained 125 yards off of 10 touches.


NETTLETON (1-1) at 4A Blytheville (1-1): Blytheville has won 10 of the past 19 in the series, but Nettleton notched a 5-point victory a year ago. Nettleton senior Curtez Smith ran 2 times for 94 yards and 2 TDs in last week's 42-14 win over Pocahontas. Kohen Ligons led the defense with 13 tackles, while Damin Coleman had 11 tackles, including 2 sacks and 3 TFL. Blytheville's defense forced 5 turnovers in last week's 38-12 win over Osceola. The Chickasaw's led by 32 points in the third quarter.

4A Heber Springs (0-1) at SOUTHSIDE (2-0): These are former conference foes, with Heber Springs winning 13 of 17 meetings. But Southside won 44-6 a year ago. Heber Springs hung with Clinton last week before losing 42-29. QB Liam Buffalo completed 3 of 4 passes for 130 yards and 2 TDs, while Parker Brown ran for 127 yards, had 75 yards receiving and scored 3 TDs. “Brown is a special player,” Southside Coach Kenny Simpson says. Southside knocked off Bald Knob last week 42-13. Senior Gabe Witt ran 7 times for 167 yards and 3 TDs, while Louis Calhoun ran for 46 yards and had 11 tackles on defense. Andrew Plummer led Southside's defense with 15 tackles.


Forrest City (0-1) at 4A LONOKE (1-1): Forrest City hung with Joe T. Robinson last week before losing 29-8. The Mustangs trailed 17-8 in the third quarter before wearing down. Junior QB Dakwon Scott threw a TD pass and ran 11 times for 78 yards. Lonoke beat Melbourne 39-0 last week, its second shutout in the past 6 games (dating back to last season). Senior QB Bradon Allen completed 18 of 25 passes for 234 yards and 2 TDs and ran 11 times for 140 yards and 1 TD.


4A Pocahontas (0-1) at BROOKLAND (1-1): Pocahontas has won 8 of its 9 meetings vs. Brookland, including last season by 19 points. But Brookland has played well this season, beating Trumann in Week 0 and losing at Gosnell last week 32-18. Junior QB Hayden Elder completed 9 of 17 passes for 143 yards and 1 TD and ran for 86 yards and 1 TD, while sophomore WR Gabe Carter caught 3 passes for 78 yards and 1 TD. Pocahontas has lost to Class 5A Southside and Nettleton this season by a combined 76-27. First-year coach Casey Chester says QB DJ Coffey and LB Ty Menard have played well.

4A NASHVILLE (1-1) at 5A De Queen (0-2): Nashville has won 21 of the past 23 in the series. Nashville turned to its defense last week to slide past Hope 24-21. Senior DL Omari Benson made 6 tackles and 3 sacks, while sophomore Zaccheus Harris had 3 sacks. Junior CB Roochie Wiley had 6 tackles and returned a fumble for a TD. All-league RB Tre Hopkins was held out last week due to injuries but will play this week, Coach Mike Volarvich says. Sophomore Tucker Dixon filled in at RB (25 carries, 152 yards), while junior J'Marion Conway gained 125 yards off of 10 touches.


Clarksville (0-2) at 4A NO. 6 ELKINS (2-0): Clarksville struggled to slow Morrilton last week (lost 35-7 and gave up 5 passing TDs). Coach Kris Buckner says LB Rhett Fultz (14 tackles) and Brack Denton played well on defense, while sophomore RB Nathan Powell tallied 110 yards. Elkins impressed with last week's 49-13 win over defending Class 3A champion Charleston. Senior Da'Shawn Chairs ran 27 times for162 yards and 1 TD and returned a punt for a TD. Senior QB Dizzy Dean completed 20 of 27 passes for 236 yards and 5 TDs, while his brother Stone Dean caught 6 passes for 90 yards and 1 TD. Mason Allan led the defense with 6 tackles, while Landon Neal had 3 tackles and 1 interception.


4A Gravette (1-1) at PRAIRIE GROVE (1-0): Prairie Grove has won 11 straight over its former conference rival, including the past 6 by a combined 176 points. The Tigers opened their season last week with a 49-14 victory over Huntsville. Prairie Grove ran 44 times for 392 yards vs. Huntsville, with senior halfback Conner Hubbs logging 8 carries for 138 yards and 1 TD, and he caught a TD pass from senior QB Luke Vance (7 of 12 for 99 yards and 2 TDs and ran for a TD). Junior Jace Edwards also caught a TD pass. Coach Danny Abshier says RB Braxton Beshears, TE David Stephenson and DB Asher Linn played well. Gravette led Inola, Okla., 20-0 at halftime last week before easing to a 37-0 win. Conner Acosta caught a 31-yard TD pass, while Gabriel Holmes ran for 2 TDs. Liam McGuire nailed a 27-yard field goal.




Paragould (1-1) at 3A NO. 7 HOXIE (2-0): Hoxie led Jonesboro Westside 35-0 at halftime last week, cruising to a 42-6 decision. QB Kayden Glenn completed 7 of 9 passes for 105 yards and 1 TD in the first half and ran 6 times for 78 yards and 3 TDs. Pocahontas' 34-6 win over Piggott last week was its first since beating Piggott a year ago. The Rams' last win against anyone other than Piggott was Week 7, 2020. Paragould LB Kaden Calhoun finished with 10 tackles, 1 interception and 1 blocked punt vs. Piggott.

NO. 9 CAMDEN FAIRVIEW (1-1) at 3A No. 1 Booneville (1-0): This is the first meeting between these programs. Class 6A El Dorado beat Camden Fairview 21-20 a week ago. Cardinals senior WR Jaylen Goodwin caught 8 passes for 131 yards. Camden Fairview's defense, led by sophomore DT DeKayson Torrence's 7 tackles and 1 sack, held El Dorado to 190 yards. Class 3A No. 1 Booneville opened its season last week with a 48-35 victory over rival Ozark. Senior Dax Goff finished with 330 all-purpose yards and 5 TDs. Coach Doc Crowley says the return of FB/LB Rylen Ray (missed last year with ACL injury) “was huge. He's a tremendous leader on both sides."


Class 3A Rison (0-2) at DARDANELLE (1-1): These teams played for the first time last season, with Rison pulling out a 44-28 decision. But Rison is 0-2 this fall after losing to speedy Bismarck last week 49-12. First-year coach Caleb Carmikle says Ayden Laws played well at linebacker. Pottsville beat Dardanelle 27-14 a week ago. Sophomore QB Creed Vega ran 22 times for 117 yards and 2 TDs, passed for 56 yards and on defense recorded 6 tackles. Jace Finkenbinder led Dardanelle's D with 12 tackles and 1 sack, while Jacob Freeman had 11 stops. Latrevious Robinson recorded 9 tackles, 1 sack and 2 forced fumbles.




7A FS SOUTHSIDE (2-0) at Wynne (0-1): Wynne plays its first home game since a March 31 tornado destroyed the football facilities. The Yellowjackets played hard 2 weeks ago in a loss at Marion. FS Southside beat FS Northside and Van Buren the past two weeks. The Maverricks scored on 7 of 9 possessions and tallied 528 yards in last week's 55-28 victory over Van Buren.


No. 1 LR Parkview (1-0) at 7A NO. 2 BRYANT (2-0): LR Parkview needs to play good defense against Bryant, which beat Christian Brothers (St. Louis, Mo.) a week ago, the No. 1 ranked team in Missouri. Bryant's James Martin ran for 168 yards and 2 TDs, while receiver Mytorian Singleton caught 6 passes for 155 yards and 2 TDs.

7A ROGERS (2-0) at  No. 8 Farmington (1-1): Farmington sophomore QB Ayden Lester played well last week in his first start, a 42-38 setback to Class 7A Springdale. Rogers goes for its second straight 3-0 start. The Mounties beat Tulsa Bishop Kelly, Okla. 35-7 a week ago. 



Batesville (0-2) at HARRISON (1-1): Both teams lost last week when favored. Batesville newcomer Damieon Nelson ran for a TD and returned a punt for a TD in a 14-point setback to Maumelle, while Harrison lost to Mountain Home 44-31. Harrison senior RB Braden Long and receiver J. Henry Brandt played well for the Goblins, but the defense struggled (gave up 529 yards, including 400 yards passing).


Victory (Okla.) Christian at NO. 3 SHILOH CHRISTIAN: These teams have split their only two meetings (Victory Christian won 41-27 in 2014, and the Saints notched a 72-33 triumph a year ago. Shiloh Christian pounded previous Class 6A No. 1 Little Rock Christian 43-22 last week in Tucker Barnard's debut as Saint head coach. Senior workhorse Bo Williams ran 45 times for 400 yards and 6 TDs. Saint freshman QB Cole Creighton completed his first 5 passes before being injured on the third series. Sophomore Evan Baker filled in at QB, completing 8 of 10 passes.

ALMA (1-1) at Pryor, Okla.: Alma beat Pryor, Okla., by 9 points last season, the first matchup between the schools. Last week, Alma led Siloam Springs 35-0 in the first half before easing to a 38-14 victory. QB Jackson Daily completed 8 of 11 passes for 181 yards, and ran 12 times for 69 yards. Pryor didn't play last week and beat Western Grove, Okla., 45-14 two weeks ago.


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