TXHSFB 303: The toughest schedules in Texas high school footballTAKING A DEEP DIVE INTO THE HIDDEN STORYLINES OF THE 2016 TEXAS HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL SEASON.
January 5, 2017
by Greg Tepper
Over the course of January, TexasFootball.com presents The TXHSFB 303, a deep dive into the hidden storylines in the 2016 Texas high school football season. Have an idea for an angle? E-mail DCTF managing editor Greg Tepper.
Today: The toughest schedules in Texas high school football
There are no easy roads to walk in Texas high school football. You may have a cupcake here or there on your schedule, but eventually, you’ll run into some fearsome competition. The quality depth that the Lone Star State boasts makes sure of that.
But not all roads are created equal — some teams face a tougher path than others. We can hem and haw all we want in the preseason (and we do!), but the proof is in the pudding; that is to say, we can find out after the season who actually played the toughest schedule.
So let’s do that. I dug up the opponent win-loss records for every Texas high school football team in 2016. We could just compare those, and figure out which teams played the teams that won the most games, but there’s another element to it — we need to tease out the team in question’s record from the opponents’ combined record, since including them would punish good teams and benefit bad teams.
Let me explain with an example: El Paso Socorro had a tough year, going 0-10. Now, you could point to the fact that their opponents were a combined 66-44 (.600) on the year, and say “Hey! They played a pretty tough schedule!” But that 66-44 mark includes ten games against Socorro — all wins, obviously — and isn’t indicative of the opponents’ true strength. So, Socorro’s actualopponent’s record is 56-44 (.560) — still tough, but not as tough as first glance.
All of that is to say: I adjusted the opponents’ win-loss records to reflect each team’s strength of schedule independent of the team in question.
I’m also separating 11-man from 6-man for the sake of this study; because of the way districts are set up differently, they’re similar but perhaps not apples-to-apples, thus the separation.
(OK, one more caveat and then I promise I’ll get to the data: this only includes in-state teams. So, for example, Bishop Gorman [NV] is not included in Cedar Hill’s opponents, since it is disingenuous to credit Cedar Hill for playing a team that went and beat a bunch of Nevada teams.)
Now that all of that is out of the way, here’s the 20 toughest schedules in Texas high school football (11-man) in 2016.Team (Record) Opp. W/L Opp. Adj. W/L Opp. Adj. Win %
The Woodlands (15-1) 132-61 131-46 0.740
Temple (12-4) 138-60 134-48 0.736
Pilot Point (2-8) 93-34 85-32 0.726Hawley (8-4) 103-46 99-38 0.723
Crawford (14-2) 129-65 127-51 0.713
Abilene Cooper (8-5) 106-49 101-41 0.711
Silsbee (6-5) 90-41 85-35 0.708
DeSoto (16-0) 127-69 127-53 0.706
Yoakum (11-5) 134-66 129-55 0.701
Carthage (13-2) 126-67 124-54 0.697
Whitesboro (5-7) 100-46 93-41 0.694
Katy (10-3) 105-55 102-45 0.694
Cedar Hill (11-3) 101-56 98-45 0.685
Killeen Shoemaker (0-10) 74-30 64-30 0.681Post (10-3) 103-57 100-47 0.680
Colleyville Heritage (10-4) 106-58 102-48 0.680
West Orange-Stark (16-0) 120-73 120-57 0.678
Schertz Cibolo Steele (14-2) 122-71 120-57 0.678
Cameron Yoe (11-3) 106-60 103-49 0.678
Manvel (13-1) 105-63 104-50 0.675
A lot of really good teams make this list, and it’s easy to see why — when you progress through the playoffs, you play better teams with (theoretically) better records. This is especially true for the three state finalists in the top five:
The Woodlands played 11-0 Sachse, 11-1 Austin Bowie, 10-3 Round Rock, 14-0 Allen and 14-1 Lake Travis in consecutive weeks in the playoffs. And that after playing Cy-Fair, Spring, Katy, Lufkin and Beaumont West Brook in the regular season, who combined for 45 wins between them.
Temple ran a gauntlet of their own in the playoffs, especially in the later rounds with 10-1 Port Arthur Memorial, 13-0 Manvel, 14-0 Richmond Foster and 13-2 Highland Park. They’re also buoyed by playing three 10-win teams in the regular season in College Station, Round Rock Cedar Ridge and Round Rock.
Crawford had a balance of tough regular season and brutal playoff opposition — the Pirates faced 9-3 Bosqueville and 11-3 DeLeon in the regular season (back-to-back weeks, even) and then had to get through 9-2 Collinsville, 12-0 Mart, DeLeon again and 12-2 Abernathy just to play 15-1 Refugio in the 2A DI title game.
But perhaps more interesting are the teams that didn’t get to AT&T Stadium — or, in some instances, even close. The story of Pilot Point is absolutely fascinating: of the Bearcats’ 10 opponents, only two won fewer than 7 games. That includes non-district matchups with undefeated state champion Gunter, 13-win Brock, 11-win Muenster and 10-win Krum, plus district matchups with 11-win Pottsboro and 9-win Howe. Pilot Point played the eventual champ Gunter and the defending champ Brock in consecutive weeks! Nobody can ever accuse Pilot Point coach Rob Best — who retired at season’s end — of scheduling soft.
Here are the five toughest schedules in each classification.Class 2A DITeam (Record) Opp. W/L Opp. Adj. W/L Opp. Adj. Win %Hawley (8-4) 103-46 99-38 0.723
Crawford (14-2) 129-65 127-51 0.713Post (10-3) 103-57 100-47 0.680
Kerens (4-8) 97-48 89-44 0.669
Shiner (8-4) 92-53 88-45 0.662Class 2A DIITeam (Record) Opp. W/L Opp. Adj. W/L Opp. Adj. Win %
Wellington (13-2) 102-64 100-51 0.662
Iraan (15-1) 119-77 118-62 0.656
Bremond (16-0) 116-80 116-64 0.644
Dallas Gateway Charter (2-9) 88-47 79-45 0.637
Munday (12-2) 93-70 91-58 0.611http://www.texasfootball.com/txhsfb-303 ... -football/