On Thursday, play will begin for the Division II 7-on-7 state tournament in College Station. 64 teams across the state will be vying for the state 7-on-7 title at Veteran’s Memorial Park. One of the most fascinating things about the state tournament is the amount of games that will be played simultaneously across 16 45-yard fields.
What is 7-on-7?
7-on-7 is pitting obviously, seven players against seven players, on a 45-yard field. Defenses are not allowed to rush the quarterback or any run plays may not be called. Quarterback’s are allowed four seconds to deliver the ball. Failure to do so results in a dead ball or a play being called back.
Who is included in Division II?
Division II included 4A-1A teams and small school TAPPS teams. No TAPPS teams qualified for this year’s state tournament in Division II.
Any clear cut favorites?
Four-time state 7-on-7 champions Celina are once again, a favorite to lift the hardware this 2017 summer campaign. Former back-to-back title holders in Graham are back in attempt to repeat their glory days back in 2013 and 2014, putting up solid performances in Snyder and in Brownwood.
Other notable teams to look out for is China Spring, Stephenville, Somerset, who was in the final eight in 2016, Gilmer, Brock, Brownwood and Kaufman, who won the Division II title last year.
Success runs deep
It is a proven fact that winning the state 7-on-7 title may buy success in the fall season for some teams. With a 7-on-7 title in 2013 and 2014, Graham saw themselves one game away from state. Celina, winning the title in 2012, bowed out of the playoffs at the regional semifinal round.
Out in Snyder, Lubbock Estacado impressed with their stout defensive showing alongside lighting up the scoreboard. With the Mats suffering a loss in their first attempt to qualify for state against Lubbock Coronado, momentum is in full swing for Estacado. Another team that is under sleeper status is Somerset. The Bulldogs, who were in the final eight a year ago, will be looking for the hardware this time around. With a tough group draw to open the gates, Somerset will be making noise in College Station.
MORE: South Plains preview
Sweeny and Texarkana Pleasant Grove have the longest drought in state tournament appearances, qualifying back in 2000. Now, the two teams have broken the drought and are poised for a deep run. Central Texas will be well-represented with 13 teams taking part in the tournament. The Metroplex and the West Texas area followed behind with 11 teams respectively.
First-timers at state
Teams that are taking part in their first state tournament include Deweyville, San Augustine, Freeport Brazosport, Lubbock Estacado, Rio Hondo and Bonham.
Fans who are wanting to follow the state tournament in full, Roy Report Media will be posting scores and live-streaming throughout the day on our social media feeds.