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Southlake Style

Southlake Carroll Has a New Face Under Center This Season

Oct 12, 2015 03:59PM ● By Dia

Quarterback Ryan Agnew was a big reason why the Dragons averaged more than 40 points per game last season.

But Agnew is off to San Diego State to continue his education and football career, leaving a big question mark at arguably the most important position on the field.

With Agnew gone, Southlake Carroll turned to senior Montana Murphy and junior Mason Holmes. The two signal-callers battled it out for the starting job during fall camp. Murphy went into Week 1 as the starter after serving as Agnew’s backup last season but had an up and down performance in a loss to Austin Westlake. Holmes led the Dragons to wins in Weeks 2 and 3 after throwing for 911 yards and eleven touchdowns, and appears to have locked up the starting job. Holmes may not have much varsity experi- ence, but that’s where his teammates can pick him up.

“Mason will be our quarterback,” says head coach Hal Wasson. “It was fun to watch him improve quarter by quarter and gain more confidence. He took some big hits and continued to deliver the ball. That should make any offensive line want to block harder.”

The linemen in front of Holmes include some of the teams most experienced players. With three returning starters up front in seniors Lucas Tribble, Anton Ezzard and Chase Sanford, protection of the quarterback should be a team strength this season.

Wasson believes experience in the trenches will help the Drag- ons be even better on offense this season.

“I don’t care if it’s NFL, col- lege or high school,” Wasson says. “You have to be good up front. Our line has great camaraderie and worked extremely hard this offsea- son. I anticipate them to be one of our best assets.”

Selected as a team captain, Trib- ble is as solid as they come. As a junior, he recorded 25 pancakes and 40 knockdowns. He leads the rest of the group that will be in charge of not only protecting Holmes but also opening up holes for stud running back Lil’ Jordan Humphrey. Humphrey was slated to split carries with Grant McFarlin last season before he had one of the biggest breakout years in the state with 1,828 yards and 29 touchdowns. Hitting the 2,000- yard mark could be feasible for Humphrey as he too has gained valuable experience along with the O’ line. “Our line is looking really good this year,” Tribble says. “It helps having three guys back. We’re going to have fun blocking for Lil’ Jordan because he sees everything. If you make a good block, he’ll be there to hit the hole and make us look good.”

At 6’5” and 200 pounds, Humphrey has also created mis- matches as a wide receiver. A star basketball player, Humphrey is an athletic freak with FBS offers to play on the outside at the next level.

While his primary focus will be toting the rock for the Dragons, Wasson says he plans to use Humphrey in a multitude of different ways this season in order to best utilize his many athletic talents. Along with his big year on the ground, Humphrey also caught 26 passes for 285 yards and three touchdowns in 2014.

“Lil’ Jordan is a special player,” Wasson says. “We’re going to do some different things to get the ball in his hands. He can make some big plays for us. We also have Shemar Coleman who can help him carry the load.”

Humphrey will be the focal point of the offense, but Wasson also wants to see his wide receivers make a difference. Zach Farrar is back after finishing second on the team in receiving last season. Wasson added that Kameron Duhon, Tommy Kane and Jack Johansson should all be solid contributors.

If Holmes can continue on his steep growth curve, this year’s offense has the potential to be downright electrifying.