Hypothetical State Showdowns (3A): Gunter (16-0) vs Mineola (14-2)

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Photo via John Glaser, TexasHSFootball.com

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Every year it’s the same ole thing. Who would win if the Division I state champ played the Division II champ?

Sometimes the match ups are intriguing. Like, what if this high-powered offense had to play that tough defense. Or, we’d like to see that legendary coach against that legendary program. Maybe it’s star power on state championship teams or just to see if Cinderella can conquer one more foe.

High school football season ended last weekend at AT&T Stadium in Arlington with 10 newly crowned state champions in 11-man football.

As a way of extending the season one more week, here’s our Christmas wish — a hypothetical game of each class’s state champions. It’s like the Little League World Series finale is the United States Champion against the International champion.

But this is Texas, and we’re ALL Texans. So here are the match ups, each with a prediction.

And to go old school, we’ll put each game at a site that’s neutral and about even in distance — the way coaches used to decide on the site for a state championship game. We’ll have five games in four days at four different sites, just to mix things up for media and earn those extra airline miles.

 

3A State Finale

Who: Gunter vs Mineola

Date: Wednesday, 7 p.m.

Site: AT&T Stadium

There wasn’t a really good neutral site for a 3A state championship that was almost the same exact distance, but no kid is going to complain about playing at AT&T Stadium. Heck, both of these teams won state last weekend there, so what if Mineola has to drive 102 miles, which is 40 more than Gunter has to go?

Gunter absolutely obliterated Boling, 43-7, for the 3A Division II title game. Colson Stovall rushed for 236 yards and four touchdowns and the Tigers rolled up 475 rushing yards. Gunter, the state’s only remaining undefeated team in 3A, held Boling’s big quarterback Vernon Jackson and speedy Elijah Gooden to 146 yards of total offense.

It was Gunter’s first state title and they looked like an old veteran.

Mineola wrapped up the Division I title by beating a four-loss Yoakum squad, 35-14. The game was 14-14 late in the second quarter before Jeremiah Crawford scored the second of his four touchdowns. Crawford tacked on a pair of 5-yard touchdown runs in the second half and finished with 276 rushing yards.

The Mineola defense held Yoakum to less than 200 total yards, but holding Gunter will be a more daunting task.

This could be a high-scoring game, yet again it could be a low-scoring game as both teams have good offenses and strong defenses. Mineola has won 14 straight games since starting the season 0-2. They’ll end the season with a loss to Gunter in a game that comes down to the wire.

Gunter stops the Yellowjackets on a two-point conversion attempt to hold on for the win.

Gunter 28, Mineola 26

 

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