Mustangs tabbed No. 1 in Texas Magazine preseason poll

Published 10:07 am Thursday, June 21, 2018

After four straight trips to the Class 4A Division II State Championship Game, including back-to-back state crowns in 2015 and 2016, the West Orange-Stark Mustangs will once again be getting plenty of preseason recognition.

The Dave Campbell’s Texas Football Magazine will be coming out in about a week but they have already released some preseason polls.

Well, guess who is ranked No. 1 in the 4A Division II poll?

You got it, the West Orange-Stark Mustangs.

In the last four seasons, the Mustangs compiled an amazing 57-5 record, including a massive 40-game winning streak that ended in December with a loss to Pleasant Grove in the state title tilt.

The Mustangs outscored opponents 1,781-259 in that 40-game streak with the average score being 44.5-6.5. In the playoffs, not much changed as WO-S outpointed the opposition 717-151 with the average tune being 42.2-8.9.

WO-S head coach Cornel Thompson’s seven years at the helm, the Mustangs have a 91-12 mark (.883 winning percentage) with four state appearances, two titles and have made the 4A Division II Region III Finals all seven years.

In 41 years since West Orange and Stark merged, the Mustangs have averaged 9.7 wins a season, eight state title appearances and four crowns with just one losing season.

So its understandable that the magazine has the Mustangs in the top spot once again.

However, Coach Thompson will likely tell you, it’s a whole new ballgame when August rolls around.

So who are the other members of the top 10?

The Cuero Gobblers chime in at No. 2, a program the Mustangs defeated in the semifinals in 2015 on their way to the state title. The Gilmer Buckeyes, who the Mustangs fell to in the 2014 state title game, is No. 3.

The Mustangs will look to get tested this time around in their newly-formed district in the Silsbee Tigers. The Tigers are dropping down a division and are ranked No. 4.

The Pleasant Grove Hawks are No. 5 after defeated the Mustangs in the title game in December.

The Graham Steers check in at No. 6. The Wimberley Texans, who the Mustangs toppled in last year’s semifinals, are at No. 7.

The Liberty-Eylau Leopards are at No. 8 followed by the Lubbock Estacado Matadors and the Sweeny Bulldogs.

The 4A Division 1 rankings are out as well with a lot of familiar programs.

They are: No. 1 Argyle; No. 2 Carthage; No. 3 Stephenville; No. 4 Waco La Vega; No. 5 Liberty Hill; No. 6 Midlothian Heritage; No. 7 Kennedale; No. 8 Henderson; No. 9 Wichita Falls Hirschi; and No. 10 Melissa.