The Wolverines of Friendswood Clear Brook roared into the postseason in 2016, ending a three-year playoff drought. Having won just four games in the previous two seasons combined, coach Mike Allison took Clear Brook three rounds deep into the playoffs and the Wolverines finished with an 8-5 record.
The turnaround was quite remarkable in Allison’s first year as head coach. Clear Brook beat the teams they should, and its only losses were to teams that made the plays: La Porte, Friendswood, Clear Springs and Dickinson.
A 35-31 win over Alvin the final Friday night of October secured the fourth-place playoff spot for Clear Brook, which fell to Dickinson, 21-7, in the regular-season finale.
Clear Brook won a shootout over Pearland Dawson, 55-42, in the bi-district round. The Wolverines then shredded Kingwood, 42-18, in the Area Round before falling to a tough Cy Ridge squad in the regional.
The Wolverines were considered a young team last year by Class 6A standards, with players returning at almost every key position in 2017. Last season could be just what the program needed to springboard into an even deeper run this Fall, maybe into December if things go well.
OG Chris Box, DT Cameron Townsend
Chris Box (6-0, 315) will be missed on the offensive line. His size is big, even for Texas standards. Townsend was named to the first-team all-district squad last season. Defensive end Amir Roozbehani was an all-district performer last year.
If there’s any really big void to fill on either side of the ball, it would be the secondary spot as Clear Brook loses two safeties in Drew Adams and Nick Bailey.
QB Jaizac Garcia, RB Jarrett Smith, WR Caleb Chapman
Jaizac Garcia passed for 2,262 yards and 30 touchdowns with just six interceptions last year during an impressive junior year. He also ran for 239 yards and three scores.
Jarrett Smith has bowling ball size at 5-7, 184, but he runs like a snowball rolling downhill. Last year as a junior, he ran for 1,710 yards and 15 touchdowns with 6.22 yards per carry.
Caleb Chapman and Mark Milton are a nice one-two threat at wide receiver. Chapman had a monster year last season with 1,049 yards and 17 touchdowns on 64 receptions — all team highs. Milton had 412 yards and six touchdowns on 30 catches.
On the offensive line, Richard Lewis was an all-district center last year as a sophomore, and Dimitos Giannakopolous was named as a tackle during his junior year.
Clear Brook has all the right pieces to improve on last year’s eight wins, and the experience could have them going deeper into the playoffs.
The Wolverines should be able to patch its defense to start the season, but the offense should be in mid- to late-season form by the first scrimmage.
The season starts with a home game against Bellaire, and the Wolverines travel to La Porte and South Houston to round out non-district play. District starts with games against Clear Falls and Clear Creek.
The true test comes in the final five weeks, which includes road games at Friendswood (Oct. 13), Clear Springs (Oct. 27) and Dickinson (Nov. 10). If Clear Brook can take two of those road games and win all of their home contests, then this team could be scary to face come playoff time.
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