Down the Field: Week One Sees Big Changes in Fort Worth ISD Football Schedule
The 2012 football season kicks off in the Fort Worth ISD Thursday, August 30, and there are more than a few changes in store for teams and fans. There are three new districts, new opponents and a split of the District's 10 4A schools, something that hasn’t happened since the mid-1990’s.
All fans should be aware of the outbreak of the West Nile Virus and take appropriate steps. Dress in long sleeves and long pants and use repellents that contain DEET. The Fort Worth ISD has taken steps to ensure that the District’s stadiums are safe for all fans and teams and encourages everyone planning on attending to do their part and Know the Plan.
Diamond Hill-Jarvis is once again the lone 3A school and they move to district 6-3A with Kennedale, Lake Worth, Mineral Wells, Castleberry and Springtown. “We are very excited about the change,” says DHJ head coach Rob Abernathie. “Plus, we don’t have to travel to Dallas multiple times, and we get to play closer to home.” The Eagles, a young team with only 10 seniors, will feature a run-oriented offense. Their season starts on September 7 at North Dallas.
The biggest change in the Fort Worth ISD is in class 4A. Polytechnic returns to 4A after two seasons in 3A. And for the first time since the mid-1990’s, the 11 teams in 4A are split. District 6-4A includes Carter-Riverside, Dunbar, Eastern Hills, North Side and Polytechnic, with Saginaw, Saginaw Boswell, Saginaw Chisholm Trail and Birdville. Parrots Head Coach Chris Roberts returns most of his offensive and defensive line, but is worried about conditioning. “We don’t have the depths that the other teams in the district have, so we have more kids playing both ways and our conditioning is a big concern.” Poly opens up against Venus this Friday night at Venus. 6-4A appears to be wide open with Dunbar and Birdville looking to be the top teams in the district. That match-up on September 21 at Birdville could determine the district title, but Saginaw and either Eastern Hills or Carter-Riverside could also play into the mix for a playoff spot.
District 7-4A has Arlington Heights, South Hills, Southwest, Trimble Tech, Western Hills and O.D. Wyatt, with Aledo and Granbury. The battle for the top spot will probably go through Aledo, but Southwest and Arlington Heights will be ready for the fight. Southwest will travel to Aledo on October 26 and then will meet Arlington Heights the very next week on Saturday, November 3. The Yellow Jackets have a new head coach in Todd Whitten, who comes to the Fort Worth ISD after serving as a coordinator for Lamar University. Heights returns about half of their starters on both sides of the ball, and Coach Whitten is installing a new offense and defense. “We will run a one-back offense and rely on the pass, while we will switch to a 4-2-5 defensive scheme.” Over at Southwest, Coach Lanny Trammell is excited about the changes in district 7-4A. “We will finally get outside of the Fort Worth city limits for a game. It will be a real road-trip and that is something we haven’t gotten to do during the regular season.” The Raiders offense is pretty much intact from last year with the trio of Wesley Harris, Robbie Rhodes and Willie Robinson returning for what they hope to be another record setting season.
District 3-5A remains unchanged, with Paschal being the Fort Worth ISD’s lone entry in Class 5A. They are joined by the five Arlington high schools, North Crowley and Weatherford. In the last 2 seasons, the Panthers have gone 1-19 and would like nothing more than to string together a few wins to get their football team back on track. That is a tough task with the stiff competition from the Arlington schools.
Here is the complete schedule of games for this week:
Thursday, August 30, at 7:00 p.m., Carter-Riverside hosts Dallas Pinkston at Farrington Field, Southwest opens with Cleburne at Clark Stadium and Eastern Hills takes on Bishop Dunne at Handley Field.
Friday, August 31, at 7:30 p.m., Western Hills hosts Seagoville at Farrington Field, Trimble Tech plays Brewer at Handley Field and O.D. Wyatt opens with Arlington Sam Houston at Clark Stadium. Arlington Heights travels to Birdville, South Hills opens at Joshua, North Side plays at Lake Worth, Dunbar takes on Dallas Lincoln and Polytechnic plays Venus.
Check back here each Thursday and Friday for game previews and on Friday and Monday for game recaps.