UIL State Track & Field

Fort Bend Marshall boys win Class 5A Crown

For the third time in the past four seasons Fort Bend captured the Class 5A UIL Boys State Track and Field Championship. Vype

AUSTIN - Fort Bend Marshall is quickly turning into a track and field dynasty.

The Buffs for the third time in the past four seasons captured the Class 5A UIL Boys State Track and Field Championship.

"Everything, I know it's a cliche to say when you win a championship they they're all different but they are," Fort Bend Marshall coach Lloyd Banks said. "This is a different group of kids, different circumstances. Youthful, the way they rose to the occasion was a thing of beauty.

"I'm proud of them."

Heading into the final event of the night, the Buffs needed at least a third-place finish in the 4X400-meter relay race to secure the title.

Trailing Mansfield Legacy by eight points, 56-48, Marshall turned on the burners in the last race of the evening.

The combination of Devon Achane, Dominick Houston-Shepard, Korey King and Henry Thomas proved to be just what they needed.

The group posted a 3:16.47 to take the gold and secure the state championship.

"This is my first year and it's a real great feeling," Shepard said.

The opponents on the track hasn't been the only thing Fort Bend Marshall has had to battle over the last few weeks.

Rumors had been circulating that the school could be altered to potentially an academy and potentially split the athletes to other schools in the district.

Banks did tell VYPE that they are here to stay and no changes will be coming to the high school.

"The fact that the rumors are there kind of bother us," Banks said. "We're doing so many great things outside the athletic realm. I'm happy for our kids and I'm happy for our community. I hope we continue to put a good product on the track, field and classroom.

"The kids were kind of upset about that. Why would you want to close us? What are we doing or not doing for us to be in a position to uphold us. Our kids look at us like we should be a flagship school. That's our mindset. For the last couple of years if you look at it athletically and academically we're there. But because of our social-economic situation sometimes we get the negative tag. If you take the time to look deeper you'll see there are awesome things going on at Fort Bend Marshall. We'll continue to do that."

The Buffs boys track team also took silver in the 4X100 and 4X200-meter relay to help bolster their point total. Of Fort Bend Marshall's 68 points, 52 came from the relay teams.

Houston-Shepard also racked up 14 more points in the 110 and 300-meter hurdles with a third place and second place finish, respectively.

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Photo by Getty Images.

It's easy to blame Bill O'Brien for the Texans woes. He is a lousy GM, a below average play caller and his offense is boring, predictable and ineffective. Not once has he had a top 10 offense in the league. So he does not get a pass here.

But Deshaun Watson shouldn't, either.

Last year, Watson was in the MVP conversation entering the game in Baltimore. Four of the nine games he played before that, Watson had an ESPN Total QBR over 85, which is playing at an elite level.

Since that 41-7 debacle (where his QBR was 13.6), Watson has played 10 games. He has topped 85 just once (and barely - 85.6) in the win over the Patriots. While QBR is not the be all end all, it shows a trend. And before you blame the talent around him or the ridiculously stupid DeAndre Hopkins trade, eight of those games were with Hopkins in the lineup.

Over his last 10 games, Patrick Mahomes has done it five times (and just missed last week at 84.7). Lamar Jackson has done it six times in his last 10. Russell Wilson is six for his last 10. Dak Prescott? Three. Aaron Rodgers? Three. Ryan Tannehill? Three. Josh Allen? Two. Lamar Jackson led the league last year with an 83 for the season. Watson was sixth at 71.3. To be a top 10 quarterback, you had to average 64.1. In two games this season, Watson sits 20th, about where he was over the last six regular season games and two playoff games last year.

In essence, Deshaun Watson - who often gets compared to those players - is not on their level. Yes, O'Brien has a lot to do with it, but it's also time to start looking at Watson's performance and regression as an NFL quarterback.

In 2018, Watson had four such games. In 2017, four in six starts. And now ONE since that Baltimore game. In fact, he has topped 80 just once in that stretch, and 60 just three times.

What it tells us is Watson has been an average quarterback over his last 10 starts. The Texans invested heavily in an offensive line to protect him. They have added depth at WR but a net loss without Hopkins. Elite quarterbacks turn in performances like that roughly half the time. Getting more consistent has always been an issue for Watson. But since that Baltimore game, he has not been close. And he is being paid to be elite.

In the end, O'Brien is still the main culprit. He has hand picked all the players around Watson, he designed the offense, and he controls everything.

But it's time to quit giving Watson a pass. Right now, he is part of the problem.

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