2014 record: 8-2
Spring scrimmage: Thursday, instra-squad, 6
Sept. 4 @ Bastrop
Sept. 12 Gladewater
Sept. 18 Huntington
Sept. 25 @ Evangel
Oct. 2 Byrd
Oct. 8 Capt. Shreve
Oct. 16 BTW
Oct. 23 Haughton
Oct. 30 @Southwood
Nov. 6 @ Airline
The Parkway Panthers lost much of the offensive talent that helped them win 21 games over the past two seasons to graduation.
Coach David Feaster is taking a close look at his new starters at most of the skill positions during spring practice.
But quarterback isn’t one of them. Keondre Wudtee, the Offensive MVP on both the All-Parish and All-District 1-5A teams, returns for his senior year.
The 6-foot-5 Wudtee has already received several college scholarship offers and is expected to receive more.
He passed for 2,544 yards and 29 touchdowns last season, helping the Panthers go 8-2 and finish second in District 1-5A at 4-1.
But he will no longer have wide receiver Jared Lancaster, running backs Demetrius McAtee and Stacy McCray, tight end Artavious Lynn and running back/receiver William McKnight at his disposal. All signed with colleges in February.
Wudtee will have one of the top athletes in the area to throw to in CJ Morgan, who has committed to Mississippi State.
Morgan, a first-team All-Parish selection, played receiver and defensive back last season but his focus is expected to be on offense this season.
“He’s really started to look good over there,” Feaster said.
Also returning is Robert McKnight, William’s brother. McKnight saw extensive action last season and is expected to be a key contributor this season.
Feaster said Deante Hawkins will also be a receiver and Harrison Hopkins will step in as tight end.
“Both have looked really good,” he said.
Feaster said he likes what he’s seen of all the new starters both in offseason workouts and spring practice.
Nicolas Holt, a second-team all-district selection, returns up front along with Ladarean Patterson and Miles Landingham.
Linebackers Ryan Black and Greg Jones, lineman Kyler Marrus, linebacker Semaj Tarver and back Lloyd Cole are back on defense.
“Lloyd Cole has looked tremendous,” Feaster said. “He’s gotten so much faster and so much stronger. We think he’s going to be one of the top defensive players in the state.”
As always, finding depth at each position has been a focus for Feaster and his staff during spring.
“I think that was a key point in that Calvary game last year (a 46-27 loss),” Feaster said. “We didn’t quite have enough players. Guys started to go down, cramp up and we weren’t as good later in the game because of it. We’ve got to get as many as possible ready to play.”
— Russell Hedges, email@example.com