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Central Texas Local News | kcentv.com

Friday Night Lights: Countdown to Kickoff 2019

The 6 News sports team gets you ready for all the Central Texas high school football action! Here is your countdown to Friday Night Lights. Watch it every Friday.
Credit: KCEN

The 6 Sports team is counting down to the 2019 high school football season.

We'll bring you coverage for the teams across Central Texas every Friday night this season on 6 News. 

Here's a peak at what you can expect from each Central Texas Team:

Midway Panthers

The Panthers haven't lost a district game since the 2013 season, so it's no surprise Dave Campbell's Texas Football Magazine has Midway picked as district champions once again. They graduated a lot of talent but still bring back a good amount of starters.

Temple Wildcats

Expectations are always high in Temple and this year is no exception. Dave Campbell's Texas Football Magazine has the Wildcats finishing second in the always competitive District 12-6A.

Belton Tigers

The Tigers are coming off a 7-4 season that ended with a loss to Rockwall in the Class 6A Bi-District round. Dave Campbell's Texas Football Magazine has the Tigers sitting at No. 3 in a brutal district this season.

Copperas Cove Bulldawgs

The Dawgs were back in the playoffs last season where they met up with eventual state champion Longview. Cove is returning five starters on both sides of the ball, but a new quarterback will be leading the offense. Cove expects to be back in the playoffs this season.

Ellison Eagles

The Eagles were one game shy of a playoff run last season. With 25 seniors back from last year's squad, the Eagles are leaning on their experience to make sure history won't repeat itself. Eight starters are back on Ellison defense including pretty much the entire secondary. 

Killeen Kangaroos

The Kangaroos are bringing back almost their entire offense. Eight starters are returning from a team that barely missed the 2018 playoffs. You can expect Killeen to be a contender in District 12-6A.

Shoemaker Grey Wolves

The Wolves finished 2-8 overall in 2018, but two of those losses were by less than 7 points. Shoemaker has had success in its lower levels, and now the team says it's time to win at the varsity level.

Harker Heights Knights

The Knights are bigger, faster, stronger and-- most importantly-- healthier in 2019. After an injury-plagued season last year, the Knights have regrouped and the players say they're closer than last year's squad. 

Waco High Lions

Six starters are coming back on both sides of the ball as the Lions look to restore the roar. The team worked all off-season to improve each day, and they say they're ready to move forward in 2019.

University Trojans

University snapped a 47-game losing streak in 2018 and finished the season 3-7. Now, the Trojans are building on a run that saw Trojans in the hunt for a playoff sport going into the final two games.

La Vega Pirates

The Pirates are picked to repeat as District 5-4A, Division I champions. La Vega is returning 31 lettermen, including eight offensive starters and four on defense. 

China Spring Cougars

China Spring enters 2019 ranked No. 25 in Class 4A Division I and picked third in District 5. The Cougars' 2018 roller coaster ended with an upset over Benbrook in the first round and giving top-ranked Argyle all they could handle in the second round. 

Gatesville Hornets

The Hornets are young in an unforgiving district that includes defending state champion La Vega. The team is leaning on the experience of coach Luke Howard, who coached for national champion UMHB before he returned to his alma mater. 

Connally Cadets

Dave Campbell's Texas Football Magazine has the Cadets picked No. 6 in 4A Division II, the highest ranking in school history. 

Lorena Leopards

The Leopards are coming off a monster season that saw them in the region two semifinals after winning District 8-4A. This season will look a little different after the graduation of multiple starters, including six who were named All-District. The good news: Quarterback and district MVP Bradley Lina is back.

Robinson Rockets

The Rockets finished 5-6 a year ago, falling to rusk in the bi-district round. This year, they're picked to finish fourth in a district that saw five teams win at least five games in 2018.

Salado Eagles

The Eagles return a lot of youth in 2019, including eight juniors who started at some point during their sophomore season.

Mexia Blackcats

The Blackcats are finally healthy after injuries took all of their running backs and plagued them across the field in 2018. Even though Dave Campbell's Texas Football Magazine has them sitting last in the district, the Blackcats are poised to make some noise in 2019.

Groesbeck Goats

Groesbeck had a major coaching shakeup this year. Their new head coach is the same one who led the team to a state title in 1991. Twenty-eight years later, Jerry Bomar is hoping he can lead the Goats to success once again.

Teague Lions

The Lions are looking to make some noise a year after they fell to Troy in the first round of the 2018 playoffs. Six starters are back on both sides of the ball for Teague.

McGregor Bulldogs

Despite going 4-6 a year ago, district play was McGregor's downfall. The Bulldogs are bringing back a ton of experience, which is key for the entire team that aims to be one of the toughest in the district.

Cameron Yoe Men

Cameron Yoe is ranked fourth heading into the season and is expecting a deep playoff run. Six starters are back on offense and five are on defense from a team that made it to the third round in 2018.

Troy Trojans

The Trojans are coming off a stellar 9-3 2018 season, inwhich they finished second behind the Yoemen. Dave Campbell's Texas Football Magazine has the Trojans, who are returning their entire offensive line, finished No. 2 again this season. 

Rockdale Tigers

Rockdale is on a mission to make up for its first round loss to Grandview in 2018 as the team brings back eight starters on offense but only three on defense. 

Academy Bumblebees

The Bees are fresh off their first playoff appearance since 2015 and looking to keep it rolling. Academy brings back six starters on both sides of the ball from a sophomore-heavy 2018 squad.

Clifton Cubs

The Cubs enter the season ranked No. 4 in 3A Division II by Dave Campbell's Texas Football Magazine. The Cubs are picked to win District 8-3A Division II for the second year in a row with a veteran squad that bringsdist back 13 seniors and six starters on offense.

Rogers Eagles

The Eagles are bringing back everybody from last season's playoff team. Dave Campbell's Texas Football Magazine has the Eagles finishing second in District 8-3A behind Clifton.

CTCS Lions

The Lions are coming off a 2018 trip to the playoffs and looking to make it back. This will be the Lions' tenth year play 11-man football, and they're ready to make some noise.

Mart Panthers

The defending state champion team is bringing back nine lettermen, including three defensive starters and three offensive starters. Dave Campbell's Texas Football Magazine has the Panthers picked to win it again.

Bartlett Bulldogs

The Dogs only lost four seniors from last year's team. They'll have plenty of experience in 2019 while they work to build confidence after an 0-10 2018 season.

Bosqueville Bulldogs

The powerhouse team is battling inexperience as the Bulldogs replace eight offensive starters, including every skill position on the field. 

Riesel Indians

The Indians are projected to finish second behind Bosqueville in District 8-2S Division I. The team still has a lot of fire left over from 2018 when the team faced a tough loss to De Leon.

Bruceville-Eddy Eagles

The Eagles went 5-5 last year, just missing the playoffs. Nine players are returning nine defensive players and are expected to be in the playoffs this time around.

Axtell Longhorns

The Longhorns are hoping to build off a 6-win 2018 season. The Horns are picked to finish behind Bosqueville, Riesel and Bruceville-Eddy. 

Moody Bearcats

Dave Campbell's Texas Football Magazine showed no love for the Bearcats, projecting them to finish last in District 8-2A Division I. The team lost its last six games last season to finish 1-9 in 2018.

Crawford Pirates

The Pirates are hoping they can bounce back from a disappointing 2018 season when Riesel knocked them out in the first round. 

Valley Mills Eagles

The Eagles are fresh off their first playoff berth since 2011, but this year, they're going to have to improve a defense that gave up 39 points a game.

Holland Hornets

The Hornets are bringing back 20 lettermen, including 17 starters from a team that ended its 2018 run in the second round of playoffs. Dave Campbell's Texas Football Magazine has the team ranked No. 13 entering the season, but the Hornets are in the same region as No. 1 Refugio, No. 2 and defending state champ Mason and No. 3 Shiner. 

Marlin Bulldogs

The dogs are coming off an 0-10 season but return almost everyone from a 2018 squad that had only one senior. 

Abbott Panthers

The Panthers are hoping to bounce back from their 2018 season when they were 4-2 entering the final three games before they dropped every game, missing the playoffs. Dave Campbell's Texas Football Magazine has the team picked to finsh second. 

Jonesboro Eagles

Jonesboro has played on the biggest stage in Texas two of the past three years, but went 6-5 in 2018. The Eagles' season ended with an upset by 6-man Cinderella, Leakey in the first round of playoffs. Dave Campbell's Texas Football Magazine has Jonesboro missing the playoffs this year.