Smith Awards finalists announced; WO-S Teal a defensive finalist

Published 8:45 am Thursday, January 17, 2019

BEAUMONT — The finalists have been announced for the 27th annual 2019 Willie Ray Smith Awards honoring the top high school football players in Southeast Texas.

There are four offensive finalists and four defensive finalists.

The offensive finalists are last year’s winner Port Neches-Groves quarterback Roschon Johnson, Newton running back Darwin Barlow, West Brook running back Robert McGrue and Evadale running back Will Farr.

Defensive finalists are West Orange-Stark safety Teshaun Teel, Newton linebacker Jadrian McGraw, West Brook safety Darrell Hawkins and Hamshire-Fannett linebacker Blaine Waggoner.

The banquet, sponsored by the Beaumont Lions Club, will be held Feb. 18 at 6 p.m. at the Elegante Hotel in Beaumont.

Johnson, who has committed to the University of Texas, passed for 2,338 yards and 22 touchdowns and ran for 1,619 yards and 27 scores for the Indians.

Barlow was a key cog in Newton’s back-to-back Class 3A Division II state titles. The running back, who has committed to TCU, ran for 2,366 yards and a whopping 43 touchdowns and caught 18 passes for 361 yards and three scores.

McGrue helped push West Brook all the way to the Class 6A Division II state title game. The back rushed for 1,680 yards and 28 TDs and had 318 receiving yards and four TDs.

Farr was instrumental in leading the 2A Rebels to the postseason again. Farr chewed up 2,310 yards rushing on 232 carries and scored 23 TDs.

Teal had 109 tackles for the Mustangs, 76 of them solo. He had two interceptions, three caused fumbles and scored three TDs.

Newton’s McGraw notched 194 tackles for a stiff defense and had eight tackles for losses.

Bruin Hawkins notched 142 tackles, 63 of them solo, knocked down six passes and blocked two kicks.

Waggoner had a great year for the Longhorns, making 153 tackles, 116 of them solo, including eight for losses.

The Smith Awards is considered Southeast Texas’ Heisman Trophy. It was created in 1992 and first given out in 1993.

Smith won 235 games and two state championships in 33 seasons as coach at Beaumont Charlton-Pollard, Orange Wallace and Lufkin Dunbar.


Here are the past Willie Ray Smith Award winners:

1993: Dexter Hebert, Kelly; Defense: Frank Middleton, West Brook

1994: Jay McGuire, Silsbee; Defense: Shun Horn, Jasper

1995: Jeffery Spikes, Burkeville; Defense: Tyseki Adoin, West Brook

1996: Elijah Burkins, Thomas Jefferson; Defense: T.J. Light, Lumberton

1997: Bryan Bock, Bridge City; Defense: Fred Wright, Kountze

1998: Offense: Chip Ambres, West Brook; Defense: Charles Sias, WO-S

1999: Offense: Beaux Daville, Orangefield; Defense: Rod Gulley, Newton

2000: Offense: Dustin Long, PN-G; Defense: Gayron Allen, WO-S

2001: Offense: Sean Yoder, Nederland; Defense: Jermaine Hope, WO-S

2002: Offense: Tony Eckert, Lumberton; Defense: Ricky Wilson, Lincoln

2003: Offense: Matt Peebles, Bridge City; Defense: William Bryant, Jasper

2004: Offense: Jamaal Charles, P.A. Memorial; Defense: William Morrissey, Silsbee

2005: Offense: Jamaal Charles, P.A. Memorial; Defense: Brian West, Ozen

2006: Offense: Kenneth Beasley, WO-S; Defense: Sean Weatherspoon, Jasper

2007: Offense: Micah Mosley, Nederland; Defense: Earl Thomas, WO-S

2008: Offense: Cody Hussey, Lumberton; Defense: Tramain Thomas, East Chambers

2009: Offense: Christian Micheal, West Brook Defense: Kevin Robinson, WO-S

2010: Offense: Jeremy Johnson, Silsbee; Defense: Jacoby Hale, Central

2011: Offense: Fred Ford, Kirbyville; Defense: Colin Garrett, West Brook

2012: Offense: Terrence Singleton, P.A. Memorial; Defense: Corbin Carr, Nederland

2013: Offense: Montana Quirante, Vidor; Defense: Montana Quirante, Vidor

2014: Offense: Patrick Reed, Silsbee; DeShawn Washington, Nederland

2015: Offense: Michael Jacquet, Central; Defense: Deionte Thompson, WO-S

2016: Offense: Jack Dallas, WO-S; Defense: Steven Tims, WO-S

2017: Offense: Calvin Tyler, Silsbee; Defense: Kary Vincent, PA Memorial

2018: Offense: Roschon Johnson, PN-G; Defense: Corbin Foster, Newton