Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Insider: First look at Longview vs. Klein Collins

In Lobo Insider

Hayden Henry

By Hayden Henry
Nov. 28, 2017 at 3:05 p.m.
Updated Nov. 28, 2017 at 3:05 p.m.

The Class 6A, Division II, Region II gauntlet continues this week and what a weekend is on tap.

Longview faces its tallest task to date against state power Klein Collins. Meanwhile, in the other Region II semifinal, Lufkin takes on Spring Westfield at 1:30 p.m., Saturday at New Caney's Texan Drive Stadium in Porter.

Longview will meet Klein Collins in the first meeting between the two schools at 2 p.m., Saturday at Baylor's McLane Stadium.

"They're a very impressive football team and Coach (Drew) Svoboda does an excellent job," Longview head coach John King said. "They've got a heck of a defensive football team and that's what they kind of hang their hat on is playing a good, physical style of football. They have a lot of confidence in what they do.

"And that's true for their offense as well."

Klein Collins, ranked No. 8 in Class 6A in the final AP poll of the season, comes into Saturday with an 11-0 record against teams with a combined 58-54 record. Two of the Tigers' opponents, Houston Lamar and Atasocita, are still alive in the playoffs in Division I and both school's only loss came to Klein Collins early in the season.

Defensively, the Tigers allow an average of nine points per game and have three shutouts on the. Collins' playoff wins came against DeKaney, 49-9, and Round Rock Stony Point, 48-14. DeKaney came into the first round allowing an average of 11 points per game and averaging 25. Stony Point allowed an average of 26 points per game and put up an average of 40 points entering the area round.

Offensively, Collins has rushed for 2,820 yards this season and passed for 1,636 on 121 pass attempts. The Tigers have run the ball 78 percent of the snaps. Longview has thrown the ball more this season (2,164 yards on 226 pass attempts) but still is 63 percent rush in its play calling, setting up showdown of similar styles.

"It's two very similar teams," King said. "Their formations offensively look at little different. We may line up a little different but it's the same mindset, run the football. We hope its a smashmouth game."

Collins is led by Scout.com 4-star running back Isaiah Spiller, who is averaging 6.6 yards per carry with 21 touchdowns this season. Spiller, a 2019 back, recently committed to Oklahoma, choosing the Sooners over TCU, Texas A&M and Oregon, among 12 total offers. Spiller is a vertical runner with power and vision.

Spiller runs behind 2018 2-star lineman Kameron Lewis, who is committed to Houston and anchors a line that averaging 288 pounds across the front. 2018 WR AJ Bennett and 2019 Alex Brown are also Scout.com recruits.

On defense, 2018 LB Donovan Mutin is committed to Houston and holds 16 mid-major offers. The 6-1, 220-pound linebacker is begin a defensive line, headlined by Ethan Frazier, that goes 243, 200 and 229. Safety Phillip Hall is committed to UNLV and 2019 CB Kevric Wiggins has garnered interest as well. 

Monday's practice for Longview focused on wrapping up post-game review from the Lobos' win over Dallas Jesuit in the morning before shifting focus to Collins in the afternoon before hitting the practice field today.

"We've got to build each day, work on installing our game plan and prepare at a high level," King said. "We've got to work to be at our best come Saturday, players, coaches, everyone because that's what it's going to take, everyone."

King said, outside those previously reported, that Longview came out of the area round injury free.

(Much more on Longview vs. Klein Collins coming week in the News-Journal and online at ETVarsity.com)



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