By CLINT FOSTER
The University Interscholastic League officially announced the new Texas High School football districts, Monday morning, and as usual the realignment came with plenty of excitement and intrigue.
The next two years are sure to produce many interesting storylines across North Texas, with Gordon and Strawn finally reunited in district play, District 7-6A’s gauntlet of member schools and Mineral Wells finding a new home in District 4-4A.
The Rams lose all five of the district opponents they’ve grown accustomed to the past two years – the UIL essentially swapped Mineral Wells for Alvarado to transform District 6-3A into a slightly different District 5-4A. But as the ink dries on the new district lineups, Rams fans will notice plenty of familiar foes.
In addition to Mineral Wells, District 4-4A includes Graham, Burkburnett, Decatur, Wichita Falls Hirschi and Gainesville – three of whom the Rams faced just last season.
At first glance, it’s a pretty strong district as all five teams besides Mineral Wells made the playoffs in 2013.
But how do the Rams specifically stack up against the new competition?
Let’s take a look...
2013 record: 14-1, (lost in 3A-D2 semifinals to Argyle, 38-14).
Last meeting with Mineral Wells: 2013, Mineral Wells lost, 51-7.
Summary: Arguably the strongest program of the class, the Steers are always a force to be reckoned with. They rolled through the first 14 games of last season, encountering little opposition to their high-powered offense or their stiff defense. Graham loses senior quarterback Ben Davis and running back Dillon Gonzales next year, but returns a wealth of offensive weapons and could easily be the favorites to take home the district crown and make another push deep into the playoffs.
2013 record: 4-7 (lost in first round of 3A-D1 playoffs to Kennedale, 57-28).
Last meeting with Mineral Wells: 2013, Mineral Wells lost, 24-8.
Summary: The Bulldogs have presented the closest thing to a mirror image of the Rams over the past two years. Although the Rams lost a hard-fought game in 2013, they bested the Bulldogs, 41-6, at home in 2012. Based on past history, the Burkburnett game will likely be one of two games Mineral Wells must win each year to make a push for the playoffs.