The Texas High School football season is two weeks in, and plenty of surprising results have already occurred.
Among the most surprising is the performance of traditional powerhouses from the DFW area against nationally-ranked private schools.
In Week 1, St. John Bosco, a California private school whose football team is ranked No.1 in the country by MaxPreps, came to Dallas and steamrolled 5-time state champion Allen, 52-14.
Allen is currently ranked as the 23rd best team in Texas’ Class 6A and 9th best in the division from the DFW area, according to Texas Football.
After the game, Allen head coach Lee Wiginton said the two teams were on different playing fields for various reasons.
“When you’re doing things, and other people have the ability to go recruit across the nation and give a whole team NIL (Name, Image, and Likeness) deals, it’s just a whole different ballgame,” Wiginton said. “It’s not something we want to glorify as part of [the Texas High School Coaches Association].”
St. John Bosco is believed to be the first high school that has a team-wide NIL endorsement deal. The deal with KONGiQ, a Dallas-based company focusing on sports performance, equipment, and wireless technology for college and high school sports programs, is believed to pay each St. John Bosco football player who signs up $400.
This past Saturday, St. Frances Academy, a Baltimore-based private school ranked third in the country by MaxPreps, came to DFW and trounced DeSoto 47-7. DeSoto was ranked as the No.7 team in Texas 6A before the humbling loss dropped them to No.15 in this week’s poll.
After the game, DeSoto head coach Claude Mathis was asked what he wanted his players to take away from the blowout loss.
“That they got their ass whopped,” Mathis responded.
Mathis’ answer, in a way, signifies why DFW football powerhouses benefit from an early season blowout loss.
DeSoto had not lost by 40 points since at least 2003, while Allen had not lost by 38 points since 2006, according to MaxPreps. DeSoto had a plus-296 scoring differential in 2021, and Allen plus-214 points.
Getting accustomed to winning big, week in and week out, can cause teams to get too comfortable and not recognize potential weaknesses. There may not be a better way to expose what you need to work on than matching up against some of the best high school football teams in America.
“This is a lesson learned,” Mathis added. “This is an ass-whooping learned.”
Last season, Mater Dei, a California private school, came to Dallas as the No.1 team in the country and crushed Duncanville 45-3.
Duncanville head coach Reginald Samples could only say “sorry.”
“I had to apologize,” Samples said. “They wasted a trip. They could have just stayed home and scrimmaged.”
Duncanville had not lost by such a margin since a 69-20 loss against DeSoto in 2016.
Still, after the Week 1 blowout loss to Mater Dei, Duncanville rattled off 14 consecutive wins en route to the 6A Division I state championship game and only allowed an opponent to score 20 or more points twice in its final 15 games.
Allen and DeSoto will hope they can rebound as Duncanville did last season.
Neither school will face another opponent with as much talent again. St. John Bosco fielded two five-star recruits, eight four-star recruits, and eight three-star recruits in Week 1 against Allen.
Allen was overpowered, turning the ball over four times and allowing 450 total yards of offense.
DeSoto faced a St. Frances Academy defense loaded with three four-star recruits and four three-star recruits on Saturday. DeSoto could only muster 184 total yards of offense — 120 of which came in the first half.
DeSoto’s final nine drives ended in four punts, three fumbles, one turnover on downs, and an interception.
“They physically, physically, beat us down tonight,” DeSoto’s Mathis said Saturday. “They’ve got to learn. We’re young up front. We’ve got to learn the different stunts. We’ve got to recognize the different stunts.”
Allen already rebounded with a comfortable 49-14 win against Houston King last week. Its defense forced three turnovers, junior running back Kayvion Sibley rushed for 228 yards and three touchdowns, and junior quarterback Michael Hawkins completed 68.75% of his passes.
“I want us to look at what we didn’t do well and get better at it,” Wiginton said after Allen’s Week 1 blowout loss. “Our goal has been to win a state championship since day one.”