1. DENTON GUYER
Head Coach: John Walsh, 2012 Record: 14-2
The 2012 4A Div. I State Champions bring back Texas commit QB Jerrod Heard and several other big time offensive weapons along with one of the top offensive lines in DFW. The question for Guyer will be can their young defense mature into a unit capable of winning a second title?
2. CEDAR PARK
Head Coach: Joe Willis, 2012 Record: 14-2
Cedar Park finally broke through and brought home a state title a year ago after being bridesmaids the past several seasons. The Timberwolves success begins and ends with their "Black Rain" defense. That unit will once again contend as one of the top defenses in the entire state regardless of classification. CPHS expects to be more explosive on offense as well with eight starters back in the fold.
Head Coach: Lee Bridges, 2012 Record: 11-2
Leander posted an 11-2 mark in their first season in 4A and if not for an upset loss in the Regional Semi-Finals to Corpus Christi Flour Bluff, the Lions could have been in the title discussion in Division I. The Lions do have to make an adjustment under new HC Lee Bridges who arrives from San Antonio Stevens, but this is a program on solid footing.
4. SAN ANTONIO BRENNAN
Head Coach: Stephen Basore, 2012 Record: 13-1
The Bears had a major breakthrough in just their third season of existence advancing all the way to the State Quarter-Finals before falling to eventual champion Cedar Park. With seven defensive starters back including a pair of FBS commits, the Bears have designs on winning Region IV in 2013. The key will be the offense showing more balance in 2013, they bring back seven starters as well so improvement is expected.
5. MESQUITE POTEET
Head Coach: TBD, 2012 Record: 11-3
Poteet has made deep playoff runs two of the past three seasons, but there's a lot of uncertainty surrounding the program after a late off-season coaching change. The Pirates will have one of the top defenses in the state led by LB Malik Jefferson, but finding consistency on offense and learning a new system could be a challenge.
Head Coach: Tim Buchanan, 2012 Record: 10-2
The post Johnathan Gray era, showed Aledo will still be among the elite teams in the state as the Bearcats went 10-2 in 2012. Those two losses both came to eventual champions in Stephenville and Denton Guyer. The Bearcats bring back the majority of starters from year ago and have help from unbeaten subvarsity squads coming up.
7. HUMBLE SUMMER CREEK
Head Coach: Brian Ford, 2012 Record: 11-1
There may not be a 4A team in the state as talented as Summer Creek in 2013. The Bulldogs went 11-1 a year ago losing to state runner up Georgetown in the area playoffs. They bring back QB Aaron Sharp and a host of other offensive weapons. If there's one concern its on defense where they will have some holes to fill.
Head Coach: Wade Griffin, 2012 Record: 8-5
The Wildcats made a surprise run to the Regional Semi-Finals a year ago and with a bevy of skill position players back the Wildcats could be even stronger in 2013. The key for Elgin to push for the Region III crown will be how much a defense that returns eight starters improves.
Head Coach: Jack Alvarez, 2012 Record: 8-3
Ennis broke through under second year HC Jack Alvarez with an 8-3 season a year ago. 2012 ended on a sour note with the Lions losing their final three games. Ennis brings back several key players led by RB Terence Williams and a solid offensive line. The defense should be much improved as well with DL James Lockhart leading the charge. Ennis gets plenty of depth added as their JV team was unbeaten and hasn't lost a game since 7th grade.
10. PEARLAND DAWSON
Head Coach: Eric Wells, 2012 Record: 12-1
Many in the Houston area thought 2012 would be Dawson's year to bring a title home, but a stunning third round upset loss to Nederland ended that run. This year's squad doesn't have as many big names as 2012, but depth and talent is still in abundance for one of the largest 4A schools in the state.