There were times during the season when Larry Rose wasn’t much more than a spectator after halftime of games.
After all, Fairfield was so thoroughly dominant that there was no point in risking injury to its star running back. Because of that, Rose only averaged about 15 carries per game. What he did with them was absolutely incredible, though.
Rose set a Central Texas rushing record with 2,979 yards and scored 51 touchdowns in helping the Eagles to their first-ever state championship game.
The senior was selected as the District 19-3A MVP and the Offensive Player of the Year on the Associated Press Sports Editors Class 3A all-state team. Now he can add the title of Super Centex Offensive Player of the Year.
“I couldn’t ask for a better senior year,” Rose said. “Overcoming the ups and downs we had to make it to the state championship game, it doesn’t get any better than that.”
Rose had 20-plus rushing attempts in a game three times, but he cracked the 200-yard mark on eight occasions and ended up with a yards-per-carry average of better than 12. He was limited to less than 100 yards only once and was the key cog in an offensive machine that racked up a 3A record 893 points.
He was at his best when his team needed him most.
In the Eagles’ 44-24 win over then-No. 2 Navasota in the middle of the regular season that put Fairfield on the state radar, Rose showed his ability to be a workhorse with 30 carries for 231 yards and a pair of scores.
With all Rose accomplished individually, his favorite memory came on a night in which he didn’t have his best game. Rose ran for 106 and three touchdowns on 12 carries as the Eagles dominated Sinton, 56-13, to reach the title game.
“The biggest moment had to be winning that game against Sinton,” Rose said. “Just knowing we were going to get to play for the state championship was the big thing.”
Fairfield coach John Bachtel said everything was big for his team when it got to AT&T Stadium for the championship tilt with No. 1 Argyle — big stadium, big crowd, big stage, and the Eagles stumbled out of the gate.
The Eagles got it going in the second quarter, and a classic ensued. Rose helped Fairfield with scoring bursts of 31 and 54 yards, and his 64-yard burst late in the fourth quarter gave the Eagles one last shot. They couldn’t punch it in, however, and came up short, 38-33.
Still, Rose had put on a show with 260 yards and his two lengthy touchdowns on 26 carries to cap an unbelievable season.
“First I have to give credit to my offensive line because without them I couldn’t do the things I was able to do,” Rose said. “Like I always say, the second part, once I get in the open field, is God-given ability. Practice makes perfect, so I went out and practiced hard. That’s how I was able to come up with (the season I had).”
Defensive Player of the Year: Harrison Hull, Bremond: The Tigers finished 2012 with a 9-4 record and started this year wanting to make sure they didn’t have another slip-up.
Thanks mostly to a stifling defense, the Tigers went undefeated in the regular season to claim the District 12-1A Division II title and rolled to the state quarterfinals.
At the center of that defense stood Harrison Hull, a tackling machine who finished with 181 stops — 19 for losses — and picked off two passes. Hull’s production made him the district’s overall MVP and he’s been selected as the Super Centex Defensive Player of the Year.
“This is the award at the beginning of the year — one of my goals was to make Super Centex and be the Defensive Player of the Year,” Hull said. “My goal is to always be better, and I’m excited to have this award.”
Coach of the Year: John Bachtel, Fairfield: Before the season ever began, Fairfield had to deal with a loss much more daunting than any it could ever suffer on the football field.
The Eagles’ football team, the school and the community were shocked when 15-year-old sophomore Jonathan Childers, son of defensive coordinator Kevin Childers, died of a gunshot wound in August.
The town rallied around the Childers family, and the Eagles got back to work.
Fairfield ran off a 15-1 record and made their first appearance in a state championship game, coming up just short of a Class 3A Division II title with a 38-33 loss to Argyle.
For helping his team navigate through difficult circumstances and taking it to the verge of a state title, Bachtel has been selected as the Super Centex Coach of the Year.
“It’s a big honor,” Bachtel said. “But it needs to go to the whole coaching staff. I can’t take credit for what all we did because I’ve got a super group of coaches. Joel Kuehl, Bill Crawford and Wilbert Hunter on offense, and Kevin Childers, (my) dad (Kent Bachtel), Kevin Chase and Max McGeary on defense teach the kids how to be real men. It’s a big honor, but it’s bigger that I get to coach with these guys.”
Bachtel wins the award five years after his father claimed it for taking Midway to the Class 4A Division I state quarterfinals. Midway coach Terry Gambill, Crawford’s Delbert Kelm and Bremond’s Jeff Kasowski were also considered.
Offensive Newcomer of the Year: Michael Davila, Robinson: Starting a young quarterback is always a roll of the dice, but it worked out just fine for Robinson this year.
Sophomore Michael Davila showed poise beyond his years and put up 2,820 yards and 35 touchdowns with only six interceptions in his rookie campaign.
“You never know what you’re going to get as a sophomore playing quarterback, but from very first day did a very good job running the offense and getting the ball in the hands of our playmakers,” coach Tommy Allison said.
Davila was named the District 17-3A Offensive Newcomer of the Year for his efforts, and he’s the choice as the Super Centex Offensive Newcomer of the Year.
Robinson’s signal-caller took the award over tough competition that included Bosqueville’s freshman running back Adrian Mathis, Crawford sophomore quarterback Wyatt Griffith and McGregor sophomore receiver Josh Seale.
Defensive Newcomer of the Year: Alex Parsons, McGregor: Playing in the toughest 2A district in the state would terrify some freshman.
McGregor defensive back Alex Parsons isn’t one of them. He stuck his nose in the middle of the action.
Parsons combined an ability to lay a hit on opponents with solid coverage skills to rack up 91 tackles, five forced fumbles and six passes broken up to earn the district’s Newcomer of the Year award. He’s added another accolade, as he’s the pick as the Super Centex Newcomer of the Year.
“We’ve been watching him all the way through junior high, and we knew he had that mentality to be one of the guys that even as a freshman could step up and do great things on the court,” McGregor coach Tim Seward said. “We had an injury, and all of a sudden he’s in there.”
The Bulldogs ended with an 11-2 record and reached the third round of the playoffs.
Parsons edged out Teague sophomore Dylan Crawford and Mart senior Scott Mills for the award and became the second straight Bulldog to claim it after linebacker C.J. Sims last year.
2013 SUPER CENTEX TEAM
|First team offense|
|KR||Tyler Taylor||Sr.||5-10||171||Waco High|
|First team defense|
|DL||Doug Canada||Sr.||6-2||188||Waco High|
|LB||Nika Davis||Sr.||6-1||193||Waco High|
|Off. Player of Year: Larry Rose, Fairfield|
|Def. Player of Year: Harrison Hull, Bremond|
|Coach of Year: John Bachtel, Fairfield|
|Off. Newcomer of Year: Michael Davila, Robinson|
|Def. Newcomer of Year: Alex Parsons, McGregor|
|Second team offense|
|OL||Jabrill Harden||Sr.||6-1||277||Waco High|
|Second team defense|
|DL||James Harper||Sr.||5-11||312||Waco High|
|DB||Daquinton Stuart||Sr.||6-0||146||Waco High|
|QB: CJ Collins, Bosqueville; Javarius Young, Chilton; Kristian Brown, Connally; Jacob Gallegos, Fairfield; Harris Coleman, Lorena; Troy Allison, McGregor; Payne Sullins, Reicher; Austin Skinner, Teague; Jordan Randolph, University; Traynham Moore, Waco High|
|RB: Michael Milburn, Axtell; Greyson Gonzalez, Bosqueville; James Jones, Bremond; Charles Simpson, Chilton; Brody Jones and Braden Murphy, Crawford; Robert Worley, Frost; Jake Kee, Gatesville; Javon Arnett, Ayorinde Gibson and Detrayten Wagoner, La Vega; Garrett Salas, McGregor; Kaylon Watson, Mexia; Coby Herring, Troy|
|WR: Drew Hayes, Bosqueville; Chris Lide, Fairfield; Walker Love, Mart; Danny Huckaby, Mexia; Aaron Bettge and Andrew Estes, Reicher; Zac Law, Robinson|
|TE: Tyler Smith, China Spring; Tyler Smith, Crawford; Jayson Clements, Midway; Will Van Winkle, Teague|
|OL: James Edwards, Colby Goehlke, Blake Kasparian and Jacob Kevil, Crawford; Dillen Kilpatrick and Luke Rachel, Fairfield; Jacob Burney, Mart; Tejuree Dixon-McDaniel and Taylor Robinson, McGregor; Haden Matke, Troy; Joseph Gonzales, Waco High|
|DL: Dillon VanZandt, Crawford; Danny Cockerell, Jacob Gallegos and Bryson Gates, Fairfield; Cody Williams, Lorena; Scott Mills, Mart; Jamie Jacobs, Mart; Marco Castro, Reicher; Kalil Washington, Robinson; Alexander Hoskins, Teague; Roderick Harris, Waco High|
|LB: Garrett Wilson, Axtell; Clark Barlow, China Spring; Matt Brown and Bo Pearson, Crawford; Jeremiah Simpson, Fairfield; Chase Campbell and Kyle Perlowski, Lorena; Jonathan Headen, Mart; Roy Ward, Reicher; Dylan Crawford, Teague; Rylan Cox, Ryan Sedlacek and Austin Talasek, Troy; O.C. Beasley and Kylan Robinson, Waco High|
|DB: Andraque Jones, Gatesville; Kyrell Gibson, Midway; Johnny Jackson, Robinson|
Scored 5 different ways; amassed 3,668 yards, 54 TDs
All-state pick racked up 2,117 yards, 24 scores rushing
Offensive Player of Year set new mark with 2,979 yards, 51 TDs
Caught passes for 1,327 yards, 14 TDs to help team to playoffs
Big-play threat scored 19 times, picked up 1,312 yards
All-state 1st-teamer had 58 pancakes, allowed no sacks
Graded out at 94 percent for season with 57 pancakes
Top blocker for loaded offense graded out at 93 percent
Graded out at 93 percent for season, allowed only 1 sack
Center for squad that averaged 403.8 yards of total offense
8-5A MVP, all-around threat had more than 1,700 yards, 17 TDs
Sr., Waco High
Took back 5 kickoffs for scores, including 3 of more than 100 yards
Drilled 14 field goals, 3 longer than 50, was 52 of 54 on PATs
Sr., Waco High
Terrorized QBs with 28 hurries, 9 sacks, forced 3 fumbles
District defensive co-MVP racked up 127 stops, 10 sacks
1st-team all-state choice had 27 tackles for loss, 12 sacks
Garnered 1st-team all-state nod after 139 tackles, 8 sacks
Sr., Waco High
Shared 8-4A defensive MVP award with 141 tackles, 15 for loss
Amassed 205 stops, 32 for loss, 7 sacks for state finalist
Defensive Player of Year made 192 tackles, 12 sacks, 2 INTs
District defensive MVP with 142 stops, 2 INTs, forced 3 fumbles
District MVP picked off 7 passes, made 62 tackles
Took back 2 of his 9 INTs for scores, broke up 22 more passes
Scored 4 times on defense, made 88 tackles, 18 for loss
District MVP picked off 6 passes, broke up 5 more
Had 38.5 average, also gained more than 4,000 yards as QB