HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL: Playoff hopes still alive for Bronchos heading into regular season finale

Teams want to have something to play for at the end of the regular season and right now, six of the seven programs in District 2-6A are living that scenario.

That group includes Odessa High.

Having just run the gauntlet of Permian, Midland Legacy and Abilene High, the Bronchos still control their own destiny.

Once they are finished, however, they are going to need some help.

Last week, Odessa knew going into the game against the Eagles that a loss wouldn’t knock them from postseason contention as long as both Midland High and San Angelo Central lost as well.

The Bulldogs and Bobcats did lose, keeping the Bronchos (3-6 overall, 1-4 in district) tied with Midland High (2-6, 1-3), one game behind San Angelo Central (4-4, 2-2).

So, should Odessa High defeat Wolfforth Frenship Friday at Ratliff Stadium, it would have two victories to match San Angelo Central.

Then, the Bronchos would look to the scoreboard as Abilene High is facing Midland High and San Angelo Central plays Midland Legacy.

“If those games go the way you think they would, we are still going to have a chance in the final week of the season even though we have a bye,” Bronchos offensive coordinator Creighton Reed said. “And to have that chance, that’s all you can ask for.”

Should the Bronchos get the correct results Friday, they will become big fans of Abilene High as it hosts Midland High on Nov. 4 at Shotwell Stadium, and Wolfforth Frenship, which will host Midland High on Nov. 5.

If the Eagles and Tigers emerge victorious from that scenario, the Bronchos would qualify for the playoffs for the first time since the 2013 season.

>> DEVELOPING SITUATION: When starting quarterback Diego Cervantes was injured in the first quarter against Midland Legacy two weeks ago, it spotlighted the need to have more than one person ready to run the offense.

Jaylien Jones was thrown into the breach against the Rebels, as was Ivan Carreon, but neither could move the team down the field.

Jones got the start last week against Abilene High, which meant that he got most of the reps in practice.

That was just four workouts, however, and though the coaching staff did things to move him around in the pocket, Jones is still getting used to being the one running the show.

“I’ve been to camps where they talked about having three quarterbacks at each grade level, staring with seventh grade,” Bronchos head coach Dusty Ortiz said. “So, for us that would be three at Bowie, three at Crockett and three at Ector, so there would be nine quarterbacks coming into the program as freshmen.

“Once the season is over, and basketball season as well because at that level all the good athletes play basketball, too, we’ll go to the junior highs and work on some quarterback drills and passing drills to start developing that talent.”

>> SO CLOSE: Carreon has been the breakout star for the Bronchos this season on the outside with 65 receptions for 978 yards and seven touchdowns.

Just 22 yards away, Carreon would become the first Odessa High player to eclipse the 1,000-yard receiving mark in a single season.

San Angelo Central has the most receivers with more than 1,000 yards in a season in its history with six. Permian has five, Abilene High has 3 and Midland Legacy has one. Midland High has yet to have a 1,000-yard receiver.

>> NUMBERS GAME: Friday is the day schools have to submit their enrollment number to UIL for the upcoming realignment in February.

That snapshot gives everyone a jump in figuring out where they might end out and to start contacting other schools for nondistrict contests.

Ortiz laughed when asked about the numbers: “I don’t think we’ll be around the number,” he said of the Class 6A cutoff.

In the 2020 realignment, that number was 2,220 and above.

Odessa High currently is the 15th biggest school in Texas with more than 3,800 students, with crosstown rival Permian sitting 16th, also with more than 3,800 students.

>> QUIET, PLEASE: No alma mater, no fight songs and a recorded national anthem … on Senior Night of all nights.

That’s what will happen Friday as the Bronchos’ band will be traveling to El Paso to compete in the UIL 6A Area A competition Saturday at the Sun Bowl.

In fact, all seven bands in the district will make the trip.

Unfortunate timing for Odessa High, which is playing its final game of the regular season.

>> Follow Lee Scheide on Twitter at @OALeeScheide


>> When: 7 p.m. Friday.

>> Where: Ratliff Stadium

>> Last Season: Abilene High 29, Odessa High 7.

>> Records: Wolfforth Frenship 3-5 overall, 0-4 District 2-6A; Odessa High 3-6, 1-4

>> Radio: KHKX (FM-99.1)

>> Live Updates: Follow on Twitter at @OALeeScheide.



Height: 6-foot-0

Weight: 200

Class: Senior

Position: LB

Last Week: Had a team-high 16 tackles and one interception in a loss to Abilene High Friday in Abilene.

This season: Leads the Bronchos with 99 tackles (triple the amount of the next highest on the team), with two sacks, two interceptions, two pass breakup and four tackles for loss.