The Malakoff Tigers' football team is gearing up for the upcoming 2019 campaign, fresh off their storybook season that was capped off with a trip to the 3A Division I State Championship, where they fell to the Grandview Zebras, 35-21.
They finished as district and state runners-up with playoff wins against Pottsboro, Dallas-Jefferson, Gladewater, Atlanta and Brock.
The Tigers are in prime position to pick up where they left off last year thanks to plenty of returning faces.
Dave Campbell's Texas Football is expecting some big things from Malakoff this season, including projecting them to win District 6-3A Division I and even predicting a rematch in Arlington against the Zebras.
Three of the Tigers' star players have received preseason accolades from the popular magazine: junior quarterback Darion Peace, senior wide receiver Andreas Garrett and senior linebacker Colby Rush.
Peace receives the Preseason Offensive MVP for the district as he had 2,300 passing yards and 30 touchdowns along with 668 rushing yards and eight touchdowns in 2018.
After a stellar first year as the signal-caller, expect Peace to follow up big for the next two years.
Garrett lands on the 3A All-State Offense at utility player. As one third of the receiving trio of him, Nathan Jones and the now-graduated Kaderrious Thomas, Garrett caught 11 touchdowns on 895 yards.
He and Jones will no doubt be the go-to targets for Peace in 2019.
Lastly, Rush is the Preseason Defensive MVP as he picked up 129 tackles last season and will lead the Tiger defense with seven starters returning on that side of the ball, including defensive end Brandon Nations.