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2020 HS Football Preview: San Antonio TAPPS schools | Antonian, Central Catholic and Holy Cross off to solid starts

KENS 5 breaks down the teams, players, coaches, and storylines to watch during this high school football season.

SAN ANTONIO —

D-I, District 2

Antonian Apaches

  • Head coach: Danny Padron, first year
  • Last year's record: 9-4
  • Playoff results: Lost to 31-13 to John Paul II Plano in third round
  • First game: Beat Floresville 48-25 on September 25
  • Next game: Holy Cross, October 2

Padron is coming out of retirement to coach the Apaches. He was the head man at O’Connor for eight years, then went to Texas Lutheran University for seven seasons before retiring in 2016. The team is coming off a state semifinals appearance, but they are losing All-American Devin Grant (Colorado) from the defensive side of the ball and quarterback Khalil Warfield (UTEP). The Apaches do have Bryon Armstrong returning. He’s as good in basketball as he is in football...and he is pretty dark good in football racking up more than 1,000 yards last year with 13 touchdowns, three interceptions and nearly 60 tackles. Kid is a stud. 

Central Catholic Buttons

  • Head coach: Michael Santiago
  • Last year's record: 5-6
  • Playoff results: Lost 21-16 to John Paul Plano in first round
  • First game: Beat Geneva 42-27 on September 25
  • Next game: @ San Antonio Christian, October 2

Central Catholic faced a tough test from Boerne Geneva in week one. Yes, Geneva is TAPPS DII-3, but they had a lot of returners from that state championship team. One of the main reasons why the Buttons were able to pull away late in that game is because of the strength up front. Deandre Marshall and Ben Rios both weigh 270+ pounds on the offensive line. Defensive lineman Nick Frey is a disruptive force at 240 pounds. This team should have a successful season.

San Antonio Christian Lions

  • Head coach: Henry Ellard
  • Last year's record: 4-5
  • First game: Lost to Randolph 48-0 on September 24
  • Next game: Central Catholic, October 2

The Lions are one of the most experienced teams in the district with seven returners on offense and eight returners on defense. Now, San Antonio Christian is moving up to a higher classification, so there might be a learning curve here, but coach Ellard has some muscle to play with the big boys. The talent is there, it is just a matter of how well SAC can adjust.

Other schools in district:

  • Houston St. Pius X
  • Houston St. Thomas
  • Katy St. John XXIII
  • Tomball Concordia Lutheran

Other local TAPPS schools

St. Anthony Yellowjackets (D-II, District 3)

  • Head coach: Ed McCabe
  • Last year's record: 5-5
  • First game: @ Regents, October 2.

The defense should not be an issue, but with a new offensive line and quarterback, there could be some challenges in 2020. Linebacker Elias Borrego is back after tallying 95 tackles last season, as well as Ismael Flores who snatched three interceptions.

Other schools in district:

  • Brentwood – Austin
  • Geneva School of Boerne
  • Hyde Park – Austin
  • John Paul II – Corpus Christi
  • Regents School of Austin
  • St Joseph – Brownsville
  • St Michael’s – Austin

Holy Cross Knights (D-III, District 3)

  • Head coach: Mike Harrison
  • Last year's record: 6-4
  • Playoff results: Lost 24-21 to St. Joseph in first round
  • First game: Beat Austin Hyde Park 49-26 on September 25
  • Next game: @ Antonian, October 2

Oh man, with former Brandeis quarterback Jordan Battles suiting up for the Knights, it is hard to imagine these guys won’t make a run for a TAPPS state championship. In Battles’ first game, he rushed for more than 300 yards scoring touchdowns left and right. Not only do they get Battles on offense, but they will also have his talents at safety (a position he is getting recruited at by Division I colleges). Coach Harrison had some offensive questions entering the season, even with a couple of skill players returning, but Battles fixed that issue and put this group on an impressive trajectory.

Other schools in district:

  • John Paul II - Schertz
  • CTCS - Temple*
  • Sacred Heart*
  • Hallettsville*
  • St. Paul - Shiner*

*D-IV school

Other High School Football Previews: