Head Coach: Scott Suratt, 2012 Record: 11-3
The Bulldogs left what they thought was a shot at the state title on the table a year ago and they are hungry for redpemption. With one of the state's most experienced teams returning, the Bulldogs are almost a consensus number one pick.
Head Coach: Jeff Traylor, 2012 Record: 14-2
In what was supposed to be a rebuilding year for the Buckeyes, Gilmer rolled all the way to the state title game before falling to Navasota. Gilmer returns numerous key players led by LB Josh Walker and RB Kris Boyd. Throw in a big time tradition and strong young talent in the ranks, Gilmer's going to be in the title hunt.
Head Coach: Joe Gillespie, 2012 Record: 13-1
Stephenville made quite the impression in year one at the 3A level rolling to the state title and not having a playoff game closer than ten points. The 'Jackets do have a lot of work to do in replacing a ton of skill talent that's graduated, but they do return one of the state's most gifted signal callers in Jarrett Stidham. Expect the Stephenville defense, which was vulnerable at times in 2012 to be much stronger.
Head Coach: Lee Fedora, 2012 Record: 16-0
The Rattlers were dominant in their run to the 3A Division II State Title a year ago. They graduated quite a bit of talent on offense, but the Rattlers defense is projected to be among the best in all of 3A. The key for a run to a repeat will be Navasota's young offense and the rate at which they mature.
Head Coach: Todd Rodgers, 2012 Record: 11-2
Argyle lost just twice a year ago, their season opener to Abilene Wylie and in the playoffs to Gilmer. The Eagles have one of the most versatile weapons in the state in Ian Sadler who literally can do it all. On defense LB Sam Sizelove is one of the state's most intimidating defensive players.
Head Coach: Mike Wood, 2012 Record: 11-2
The Bulldogs gave Stephenville all they wanted in the semi-finals a year ago and Kilgore is poised for another deep run. KHS brings back plenty of speed and experience on defense and with a potent ground attack on offense the Bulldogs have the ability to wear teams down in the fourth quarter.
Head Coach: Grady Rowe, 2012 Record: 11-4
After a run all the way to the Division II semi-finals in 2012, the Brahamas won't be sneaking up on anyone in 2013. Bellville's Slot-T offense will be a thorn in the side of most defenses, and the Brahams will be more than equipped to slow down the opposing offense as well with an experienced crew back on that side.
Head Coach: Kenny Davidson, 2012 Record: 13-2
The Steers advanced all the way to the state semi-finals a year ago and with their top passer, rusher and receiver back GHS is primed to repeat their 2012 success. The key for the Steers will be replacing three starters on the offensive line and in the secondary.
9. LA MARQUE
Head Coach: Mike Jackson, 2012 Record: 11-2
LaMarque had a strong debut in 3A advancing all the way to the Regional Semi-Finals before falling to Navasota. The Cougs must replace all of their offensive skill players, but they'll boast one of the top offensive lines in all of Class 3A. The defense will have the Cougs trademark speed and if the skill kids progress this will be a darkhorse candidate for a state title.
10. EL CAMPO
Head Coach: Bob Gillis, 2012 Record: 14-1
El Campo dropped from 4A and immediately made a big impact in 3A going all the way to the title game before falling to Stephenville. This year's team will be extremely young as just three total straters return, but the deep run from 2012 and plenty of tradition still makes this team a contender.