Class 4A Week 16 Rankings, Notes & Picks

Class 4A Week 16 Rankings, Notes & Picks

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Class 4A, Week 16, 2020
Copyright Hooten Publishing, Inc. 

1. Shiloh Christian (13-1)
2. Rivercrest (13-0)
3. Stuttgart (12-1)
4. Warren (8-5)
5. Nashville (9-3)
6. Joe T. Robinson (8-4)
7. Ozark (9-4)
8. Dumas (9-4)
9. Crossett (6-2)
10. Prairie Grove (10-2)
11. Arkadelphia (8-2)
12. Elkins (8-3)
13. Malvern (6-6)
14. Monticello (7-5)
15. Pocahontas (10-3)
16. Gosnell (4-5)
17. Mena (6-4)
18. Ashdown (7-4)
19. CAC (8-3)
20. Dardanelle (4-4)
21. Lonoke (7-4)
22. Hamburg (5-6)
23. Lamar (5-5)
24. Bald Knob (7-5)
25. Trumann (6-6)
26. Blytheville (5-5)
27. Mills (5-7)
28. Bauxite (4-7)
29. Pottsville (4-6)
30. Fountain Lake (4-5)
31. Star City (4-5)
32. Waldron (4-6)
33. Huntsville (4-6)
34. Jonesboro Westside (3-6)
35. Gentry (4-6)
36. Gravette (3-7)
37. Heber Springs (2-9)
38. Clinton (2-9)
39. DeWitt (2-7)
40. Highland (2-6)
41. Southside Batesville (3-6)
42. Cave City (2-7)
43. Green Forest (1-10)
44. H. Grove Haskell (0-10)
45. Helena (0-9)
46. Berryville (0-9)
47. Dover (0-6)

No. 1 Shiloh Christian vs. No. 2 Rivercrest
Shiloh Christian returns to the state title game for the second straight season. Shiloh Christian's only loss this fall was to Oklahoma Class 6A quarterfinalist Sand Springs by one point, and the Saints have beaten conference champions Dumas and Stuttgart the past two weeks. The Saints stomped Stuttgart 56-7 in the semifinals, jumping to a 56-0 halftime advantage. Junior linebacker Kaden Henley blocked a pair of punts, while senior linebacker Braden Tutt returned a fumble 63 yards for a touchdown. “Our players were locked in,” Coach Jeff Conaway says. “I was proud of our physicality at every position. It was a near flawless performance.”
Saint sophomore quarterback Eli Wisdom took over as starter in September “and his running ability gives us another dimension,” Coach Jeff Conaway says. Wisdom completes 60 percent of his pass this fall for 2,175 yards and 25 TDs. His scrambling ability (1,359 yards and 21 TDs) diversifies the offense. Senior running back Cam Wiedemann ran for four TDs against Stuttgart. He's rushed for 1,071 yards and 23 TDs this fall, and caught 36 passes for 467 yards and four TDs. Junior Ben Baker has become a bigger part of the offense the past month, and Henley “is an old-school tight end and fullback,” Conaway says. “He pancaked two guys on the same play against Stuttgart.”
Shiloh Christian's first-team defense has allowed two TDs in four playoff games. Henley paces the defense with 149 tackles, including 23 tackles for loss. He also has four interceptions, forced two fumbles and blocked three punts. Shiloh Christian has won seven state titles, but none since claiming three straight from 2008-2010. The Saints have only 10 seniors this season.
Undefeated Rivercrest notched playoff wins over Pottsville, Prairie Grove, Crossett and Warren by an average of 51-23. The Colts trailed Warren 35-34 in the fourth quarter a week ago in the semifinals, but rallied to a 20-point victory behind running back/receiver turned QB Keshawn Scott. Scott, filling in for injured QB Kam Turner (ankle) in the final 16 minutes, ran 17 times for 201 yards and two TDs and caught two passes. Scott hasn't completed a pass this fall, but averages 10 yards per carry. He's caught 70 passes for 1,361 yards and 18 TDs, and has played recently with a broken arm. Turner has passed for 2,873 yards and 37 TDs this fall, and rushed for 1,761 yards and 24 TDs. Sophomore Jaden Stovall emerged at running back in the fourth quarter against Warren, with three carries for 53 yards and a pair of TDs. Senior receiver Jaylan West (6-3, 175) has 27 receptions for 585 yards and nine TDs this year, and he torched Blytheville and Pottsville in consecutive games with a combined 225 yards and two TDs. Senior linemen Gunnar McCullar (6-0, 230) and Connor Gray (5-11, 275) have played well.
Junior linebacker Mike Sharp has a team-high 80 tackles, while classmate Tray Jones has 79 stops. Turner has 74 stops, including 12 for loss. He also has four interceptions and three fumble recoveries this season, including one he ran back 66 yards for a TD against Warren.
Rivercrest returns to the title game for the 10th time. The Colts won it all in 1985, 2010 and 2017, and finished as state runner-up in 1982, 1983, 1986, 2002, 2003 and 2015.

LAST WEEK correctly predicted both semifinal games. For the season, has correctly predicted 254 of 306 games (83 percent).

WEEK 15 PREDICTIONS (favored team in ALL CAPS)
SHILOH CHRISTIAN (8) vs. Rivercrest.

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