When: Saturday, September 7, 6 PM
Where: Ernest Hawkins Field at Memorial Stadium, Commerce, Texas
Weather: Sunny and 100 Degrees at Kickoff, 27 % Humidity, Wind NE at 6 MPH
Radio: Lion Sports Network via 88.9 KETR or KETR.org (Commerce)- Charlie Chitwood (Play By Play) Brock Calloway (Color/Analysis)
Watch: Lone Star Conference Digital Network http://www.lonestarconferencenetwork.com/commerce/
Offensive Impact Players-
Miklo Smalls, R-Soph- Plano, TX-Smalls should make his first start as the new signal caller for the Lion offense. With a new offensive system which will see less shotgun and spread and more packaged plays, Smalls will be given a chance to make plays on the ground and in the air.
Carandal Hale, Junior-Greenville, TX-Hale returns for his Junior Season and will be an important part of the Lion offense as he will be important in not just carrying the ball, but catching, blocking and serving as 1 part in an 11 part unit.
EJ Thompson, Junior, Cypress, Texas-Thompson’s season was cut short last season due to injury, but the power back from The Houston area should be back to compliment Hale’s feature back position. The Lion backfield should be stacked this year.
Ryan Stokes-Senior, St. Louis, Missouri-The Lions main home run threat on the outside returns for his Senior season looking to make big plays downfield and give Smalls a good target to throw downfield.
Amon Simon-RS-Junior, Humble, Texas-Simon was first team All LSC last year and also all region. He anchors a Lion offensive line that needs to produce in order for the Lions to score the points they are capable of.
Defensive Impact Players-
Dominique Ramsey-RS Junior, Converse, TX-Ramsey, the All-American returner, is just as dangers and able to take one back to the house while picking off an opposing QB as he is taking one to the house returning punts.
Pierre Leonard-Senior, Tyler, TX-The big man in the middle from the East Texas Rose City is back for his Senior year and serves as a huge impediment to teams trying to power up the middle. Leonard playing well this year will anchor the defensive line and make it as potent as last season.
Peyton Searcy-Senior, Killeen, TX- Searcy coming back for his Senior year after getting a medical redshirt is huge and many people believed he would be the breakout guy last year. He has the chance to do that last year. Being a battle tested guy from a national championship team, he is invaluable to the Lion defense.
Neema Behbahani-Senior, Plano, TX- Behbahani has been a key cog in the linebacking for the past 3 years, but this year will be perhaps the most important as the Lions move to a 2 Linebacker Set. HIs play will be critical in the defensive set.
Storylines-This is the game Lion Nation has been waiting 9 months for. There is a sense of excitement to see what David Bailiff has in store for the Lion program. There is a chance for Bailiff to win over any people who have not been converted by showing that he is here to win and win big. The new offensive and defensive game plans have the potential to truly maximize the talent on the roster. We will get a peek of it Saturday.
B.Minor- “I don;’t think the offense will click as well, but the defense shines with a defensive score. 38-3 Lions.”
Russell-“Lions, 56-7. If they play to their potential, they’ll roll.”
Brian-“First game of the year, and it won’t be perfect with two new systems, but the Lions still win convincingly in an imperfect but potent manner. Lions 45-6.”