Class 5A Week 8 Rankings, Notes & Picks

Class 5A Week 8 Rankings, Notes & Picks

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Class 5A, Wk 8, 2021
Copyright Hooten Publishing, Inc.

1. Pulaski Academy (6-1)
2. Wynne (6-1)
3. White Hall (6-2)
4. LR Christian (6-1)
5. Vilonia (7-0)
6. Greenbrier (7-0)
7. Camden Fairview (7-1)
8. Farmington (6-1)
9. Nettleton (7-0)
10. Maumelle (3-5)
11. Harrison (4-3)
12. Magnolia (3-5)
13. Valley View (5-2)
14. HS Lakeside (3-4)
15. Morrilton (3-4)
16. Hot Springs (4-3)
17. Alma (3-4)
18. Batesville (2-5)
19. Brookland (3-4)
20. Greene Co. Tech (3-4)
21. Texarkana (1-4)
22. Beebe (2-4)
23. Clarksville (1-6)
24. Jacksonville (1-6)
25. Hope (1-6)
26. Pea Ridge (1-5)
27. Watson Chapel (0-5)
28. Forrest City (2-5)
29. De Queen (1-6)
30. Paragould (0-6)

No. 4 LR Christian at No. 1 Pulaski Academy

These private school rivals have met in the regular season and again in the state title game each of the past three seasons.
Pulaski Academy pounded Little Rock Christian 56-14 Week 5, 2018, but LR Christian won 53-38 in the state title game, by forcing five turnovers (PA's first and only loss to an in-state team since 2013). The Bruins led LR Christian by two touchdowns in the fourth quarter in Week 5 2019, but lost 63-61. The Bruins gained revenge with a mercy-rule 63-21 decision in the state title game. PA beat the Warriors twice last fall, 60-28 in the regular season and 64-27 in the title game.
This fall, Pulaski Academy has won its four conference games by an averge of 58-16. Two weeks ago, White Hall pushed PA for one half (tied 21-21 at intermission), and last week Maumelle trailed PA 21-7 late in the second quarter. Pulaski Academy senior Joe Himon injured his shoulder in the first half against Maumelle and didn't return. Himon has 70 carries this fall 834 yards and 17 TDs, and 37 receptions for 389 yards and two TDs. Senior quarterback Charlie Fiser took over against Maumelle last week, completing 22 of 30 passes for 431 yards and four TDs. Junior Jaylen McKinney paces PA's stout group of receivers this fall with 48 receptions for 864 yards and 10 TDs. Junior middle linebacker Jospeh Osment leds PA's defense with 55 stops, while sophomore strong safety Patton Whicker has 51 tackles. Senior cornerback Josh Cady has 20 tackles, six pass break ups and five interceptions.
Little Rock Christian didn't play last week. The Warriors sanwiched a Week 5 four-point loss to White Hall around wins over Maumelle and Beebe by a combined 29 points. Sophomore QB Walker White injured his leg against White Hall and didn't play against Beebe. White has passed for 1,040 yards and 10 TDs with five interceptions this fall. The run-heavy Warriors lean on seniors Brian Gittens (58 carries, 474 yards and seven TDs) and Jayvean Dyer-Jones (138 carries, 910 yards and 10 TDs). Sophomore linebacker Preston Jones has a team-high 87 tackles, while senior defensive end Tyler Colquitt paces LR Christian has 56 tackles. Senior linebacker Slate Wilkerson has 40 tackles and a team-high three forced fumbles.
Watch extended highlights of Pulaski Academy’s 63-14 win over Liberty Christian (Texas) earlier this year. Watch extended highlights of Pulaski Academy vs Bryant (scrimmage). Watch extended highlights of Pulaski Academy’s 63-28 win over White Hall earlier this year.  Watch extended highlights of Pulaski Academy’s 63-39 win over Madison Ridgeland, Tennessee earlier this year.  Watch extended highlights of LR Christian’s 14-10 loss to White Hall earlier this year. Watch extended highlights of LR Christian’s 38-20 win over Searcy earlier this year.  

LAST WEEK correctly predicted 14 of 14 games (100 percent). For the season, has predicted 128 of 145 games (88 percent).

WEEK 8 PREDICTIONS (favored team in ALL CAPS)
LR Christian at PULASKI ACADEMY (10): Class 5A Game of the Week.
Watson Chapel at BEEBE (2): Watson Chapel hung with White Hall for a half last week before losing 42-14. Senior end Lamar Jefferson “was in White Hall's backfield all night,” Coach Jared Dutton says, while sophomore Marquez Brantley made plays at QB and receiver.Daniel Nelson hauled in 11 passes for 121 yards and a TD. Beebe's 42-point win over Jacksonville was its first 5A Central victory in a year and it's largest margin of victory in a league game since beating now defunct North Pulaski by 49 points Week 10, 2014.
Maumelle at WHITE HALL (7): White Hall likely secures the No. 2 playoff seed with a win. The Bulldog D didn't allow a second-half score in last week's 28-point win over rival Watson Chapel, and senior Durran Cain ran in four TDs. Maumelle senior Jessie Knight ran 12 times for 127 yards and a TD in last week's 28-point setback to Pulaski Academy. 
Watch extended highlights of White Hall’s 14-10 win vs LR Christian earlier this year. Watch extended highlights of White Hall’s 35-0 win over Warren earlier this year. Watch extended highlights of Maumelle’s 34-32 loss to Vilonia earlier this year.  Watch extended highlights of Maumelle’s 31-21 win over Sylvan Hills earlier this year.

Jacksonville is open.


BATESVILLE (7) at Brookland: This could be a defensive battle. Brookland, down to its third QB of the season, failed to score last week at Valley View and has scored just four TDs in four 5A East games. Batesville failed to score and tallied just 116 yards in last week's 31-0 setback to Wynne.
NETTLETON (28) at Forrest City: Nettleton faces Valley View and Wynne the next two weeks to decide the 5A East title. The Raiders put up 408 yards and 56 points last week against depleted Greene County Tech. Senior Koby Bradley ran seven times for 147 yards and three TDs in the first half, while senior QB Cameron Scarlett completed three of four passes for 92 yards and a TD and ran nine times for 110 yards and two TDs. Forrest City picked up its first conference win since Week 10, 2019, last week with a 20-14 double-overtime victory at Paragould.
Paragould at WYNNE (35): Wynne owns a 12-2 record over Paragould the past 13 years. The Yellojackets likely face Nettelton Week 10 for the conference title. Junior Alonzo Holmes ran three times for 70 yards and a TD, caught an 18-yard TD pass in last week's 31-0 win at Batesville. Wynne's D held Batesville to 116 yards and seven first downs. Senior end Tyrell Johnson registered eight stops, while senior LB's Tre Holmes and Timmy Watson had seven and six tackles, respectively. Paragould averages 180 yards weekly. Senior Jamison Devault has 54 carries this fall for 304 yards (5.6 ypc) and two TDs.
Watch extended highlights of Wynne’s 35-13 win over West Memphis earlier this yea
VALLEY VIEW (24) at Greene Co. Tech: Valley View has won all seven of its games over GCT by an average of 41-20. Valley View senior end Mario Crawford made 14 tackles, including three TFL's, blocked one punt and recovered a fumble for a TD in last week's 28-0 win over Brookland, while sophomore LB Brian Huff made six stops and two fumble recoveries, including one for a TD. GCT, down to its third QB of the season, has been hit hard by injuries at the skill positions.

Camden Fairview locks up the outright conference title and No. 1 playoff seed with two more wins. The Cardinals honed their passing attack in last week's 63-3 victory, with junior QB Martavius Thomas hitting 22 of 28 passes for 510 yards and seven TDs. The Cardinal defensive line made eight tackles for loss, with senior end Jacovey Barker making three sacks. Improved Hope led HS Lakeside early last week before losing by 18 points. Senior Ammorian Dempsey makes plays at QB, receiver and on defense.
Watch extended highlights of Camden Fairview’s 40-36 loss to El Dorado earlier this year. Watch extended highlights of Camden Fairview’s 44-25 win over Magnolia earlier this year. HS LAKESIDE (38) at De Queen: HS Lakeside has nine straight wins over De Queen, including the past three by a combined 139-20. Ram senior QB Jordan Mills comleted 23 of 31 passes for 360 yards and four TDs in last week's 43-25 win over Hope, with sophomore Kyler Wolf hauling in six balls for 108 yards and two TDs. Sophomore Braylen Russell ran 14 times for 100 yards and a pair of TDs, and caught a TD pass.
TEXARKANA (1) at Hot Springs: The winner likley gets the No. 4 playoff spot. Texarkana didn't play last week and allowed 406 yards two weeks ago in a 24-point loss to HS Lakeside. Hot Springs failed to score last week, a 45-0 loss at Magnolia. Sophomore T.J. Brogdon caught six passes for 107 yards. Senior Pierce Smalley averaged almost six yards per touch on offense and registered six tackles at safety. Senior DL Michael Jackson and junior LB Amir Andrews each recorded 10 tackles.

Magnolia is open.

Farmington at GREENBRIER (10):
These teams are a combined 13-1 this season. Greenbrier junior receiver Carter McElhaney, who ran 100 meters in 10.89 seconds at the Meet of Champs and 4.41 at the University of Arkansas camp in the summer, caught three passes for 61 yards and a TD in the first half of last week's 49-12 win at Pea Ridge. Senior inside receiver/linebacker Jacob Mathis “did a great job of blocking,” Coach Randy Tribble says. Mathis cught a 46-yard TD pass and paced the D with eight tackles. Farmington blanked Clarksville 39-0 a week ago, holding the Panthers to 73 yards. Sophomore QB Cameron Vanzant completed 16 of 28 passes for 261 yards and a pair of TDs. Senior Justin Logue caught six passes for 168 yards.
Watch extended highlights of Greenbrier’s 55-47 win over Arkadelphia earlier this year.
Alma at VILONIA (18): Vilonia likely plays Faulkner County rival Greenbrier Week 10 for the league title. The Eagles trailed Harrison twice in the first half last week before easing to a 28-14 triumph. Senior Austin Meyers completed 19 of 27 passes for 161 yards and a TD, and the Eagles ran for a season-high 314 yards. Senior Kannon Bartlett caught six balls for 64 yards and ran 11 times for 102 yards, while classmate Hunter Lane had 18 carries for a career-high 134 yards and two TDs.
Watch extended highlights of Vilonia’s 34-32 win over Maumelle earlier this year. Watch extended highlights of Vilonia’s 40-28 win over Russellville earlier this year. Watch extended highlights of Vilonia’s 28-14 win over Harrison earlier this year.
CLARKSVILLE (1) at Pea Ridge: This is the first meeting between these teams. Clarksville has lost has four straight conference games this fall by an average of 34-5, while Pea Ridge has lost its four 5A West games by an average of 45-16.
Morrilton at HARRISON (8): This is likley for the No. 4 playoff spot. Harrison ran for just 33 yards and threw four interceptions in last week's 14-point loss at Vilonia. Morrilton junior QB Damarius Martin ran 35 times for 174 yards in last week's one-point win over Alma.
Watch extended highlights of Harrison’s 28-14 loss to Vilonia earlier this year.

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