LHS vs MHS

The Longview Lobos take the field for Friday’s September 6, 2019 Homecoming/Green-Out game against Marshall. (Les Hassell/News-Journal Photo)

Wins over rivals, a district championship and a win streak are just mere footnotes along the way as postseason football returns to Lobo Stadium.

History runs deep as the Lobos host the Temple Wildcats tonight in a clash of the two of the winningest programs in Texas high school football history.

The history between the two teams, which has provided a back-and-forth battle in the series, dates back to 1937. That’s a famous year for the Lobos but, much like 2018, doesn’t mean much tonight.

“All that matters is tonight,” Longview head coach John King said. “Everyone has the same opportunity, whether you’re 10-0 or 1-9. You find a way to get in the playoffs and you’ve got the same opportunities as everybody else.

“One team moves on. You better be playing your best football.”

Here’s a look at Longview vs. Temple in a Class 6A, Division II, Region II bi-district playoff:

Longview (10-0)

vs. Temple (8-2)

Time: 7:30 p.m., tonight

Stadium: Lobo Stadium

Coaches

Temple: Scott Stewart (4th season, 38-13)

Longview: John King (16th season, 178-36)

Last week: Temple 55, Copperas Cove 17; Longview 49, Mesquite 14

Up next: Winner will meet either Dallas Jesuit (6-4) or Lakeview Centennial (6-4) in a Class 6A, Division II, Region II area playoff at 7:30 p.m., Friday, Nov. 22 at Kincaide Stadium in Dallas. Jesuit and Centennial play at 7 p.m. tonight in Prosper.

Players to watch

Temple: OL Dayton Lewis (No. 77; 6-0, 268) ... OL Dakari White (72; 6-0, 270) ... OL Markel Carter (75; 6-1, 300) ... QB Vance Willis (10; 95-162-9, 1,672 yards, 18 TDs; 103 carries, 883 yards, 16 TDs) ... RB Anthony Jackson (5; 95 carries, 993 yards, 15 TDs) ... RB Sarmari Howard (8; 133 carries, 919 yards, 13 TDs) ... WR Quentin Johnson (1; 29 catches, 687 yards, 7 TDs) ... WR AJ Duffy (3; 21 catches, 353 yards, 6 TDs) ... LB Taurean York (21; 75 tackles) ... DL Jayven Taylor (95; 59 tackles, 3 sacks) ... CB Roman Jackson (17; 7 INTs, 9 PBU) ... DL Cody Little (44; 3 sacks)

Longview: OL Parker Cox ... OL Malik Miller ... OL Joaquin Tovar ... OL Trevor Ford ... OL Owen Kuenemann ... RB Kaden Meredith (145 carries, 1,320 yards, 18 TDs) ... QB Haynes King (107-181-7, 1,605 yards, 16 TDs; 39 carries, 410 yards, 8 TDs) ... FB Kevin Jones (33 carries, 267 yards, 5 TDs; TD catch) ... TE Jhailon Braden ... WR Kyas Moore (34 catches, 640 yards, 3 TDs) ... WR Kaden Kearbey (23 catches, 327 yards, 4 TDs) ... ATH JD Williams ... LB Tyshawn Taylor (91 tackles, 15 TFL, 7 sacks, 2 FF) ... DL Drew Beltran (51 tackles, 20 TFL, 9 sacks, FF, FR) ... DL Sawyer Goram-Welch (51 tackles, 13 TFL, 6 sacks) ... OLB/S Malik Cannon (75 tackles, 15 TFL, 5 sacks) ... OLB/S Kybrien Jackson-Jamerson (8 TFL, 4 sacks) ... LB Cedric Smith (4 TFL, sack, 4 FR, 2 INTs) ... CB Patrick Webb (3 INTs) ... CB Dakirin Buchanan (13 PBU) ... S Tyree Hale (52 tackles, 5 TFL, 2 INTs)

Did you know: Tonight is the sixth meeting all-time between the two teams with Longview holding a 3-2 series lead ... Five meetings have come in the playoffs, including a 19-12 Lobo win in 1937 in the state quarterfinals ... Longview is 3-1 all-time at new Lobo Stadium in playoff games and 6-3-1 overall in home playoff games, according to Lobo football historian Bill Simpso of lobohistory.com ... Temple is third in Texas all-time wins with 774. Longview is seventh at 736 ... Temple is averaging 48.1 points and 492.9 yards (318.8 rushing/174.1 passing) per game ... The Wildcats allow an average of 27.6 points and 360.4 yards (223.2 rushing/137.2 passing) per game ... Longview is averaging 43.1 points and 450.4 yards (291.2 rushing/159.2 passing) per game ... The Lobos allow an average of 8.4 points and 182.2 yards (73.3 rushing/108.9 passing) per game ... Temple WR Johnson (6-4, 180) is committed to Texas ... QB Willis led District 12-6A in passing and was 9th in rushing yards ... The Wildcats committed six turnovers in each of its losses (35-29 to Round Rock Cedar Ridge and 52-28 to Waco Midway)

What to watch for: This is strength-on-strength with Temple’s electric offense, spearheaded by QB Willis, who leads a potent Wildcat attack against the Lobo defense that has shut down opponents throughout the season. This will be speed-on-speed throughout this matchup. Willis brings speed and elusiveness behind an offensive line that averages 270 pounds and six feet across the front, led by center Carter. The Lobo defense has 142 stops behind the line of scrimmage and has held opponents to 2.4 yards per carry this season. The Wildcats, however, bring a quarterback run game that the Lobo defense hasn’t seen too much this season. Temple can stretch the field and ‘spread us out across the the field and gut you on the run and when you load the box, hit you on the perimeter,’ King said. Johnson, who ‘runs like a deer’ is a difficult matchup for anyone. Willis has 59 percent completion percentage but the Wildcats average 17.6 yards per completion. Look for a conservative approach from the Lobo defense, particularly early to limit the explosive plays from the Wildcats. while staying balanced down the middle and on the outside. Longview has allowed 12 plays over 30 yards in 505 snaps and held opponents to 29-for-118 on third down. Longview’s offense, meanwhile, has shown countless looks throughout the season faces a young Wildcat defense, expect for the secondary where Temple returns the bulk of its starters. Issues for the Lobos this season — penalties, dropped passes and special teams miscues — will be costly against this Wildcat offense that can grind out drives in a game that will feature limited possessions.

Twitter-sized preview: Temple’s offense against Longview’s defense is the obvious matchup in this one but a crisp showing from the Lobo offense is where this one will be determined. Smart football on both sides of the ball will send the Lobos to its 27th-straight win.

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