Acadiana ranked in the top 100 in the nation
According to Dallas Jackson of rivals.com, Acadiana is one of the nation’s top 100 high school football teams heading into the 2010 season. In the rivals.com poll, Acadiana is ranked 46th. Unfortunately, West Monroe, the defending Louisiana 5A state champions, is ranked at number seven. Acadiana will be looking to dethrone the defending champions and win its second state title.
Acadiana, which is located in Lafayette, LA, opened in 1969. They quickly established a strong football program in a very short period of time. In fact, in just their ninth year of existence, Acadiana reached the state semifinals. But in 2006, Acadiana finally won its first football state title. Acadiana won the class 5A state championship by defeating Sulfur 13-10. It was one of Acadiana’s few close games in their five postseason contests as they outscored their opponents 171-64. Click here to see highlights from the 2006 state championship game.
Since then, Acadiana has given strong efforts in the playoffs, but has yet to win another state crown. In 2007, they lost in the title game. And in 2008 and 2009, Acadiana fell in the quarterfinals. But with 17 returning starters from the ’09 squad, Acadiana is primed to make a serious run at the 2010 state championship.
The 2010 Acadiana football team
On offense, Acadiana is led up front by OG Nick Smith (6’4″ 280.) Smith was all-distrct for Acadiana in 2009. Also, he has already given Louisiana-Lafayette a verbal commitment to play there in college. For most of its history, Acadiana has run the veer offense. The signal caller who will lead the charge is QB Ryan Bergeron (6′ 190.) A returning starter, Bergeron will look to get the ball into the hands of WR Stryker Trahan (6’1″ 210.) It remains to be seen who will replace all-district RB Blair Broussard.
On defense, Acadiana returns two players who were all-district in 2009: LB Keith Ollison (5’9″ 180) and DB Bakari Hollier (5’10” 185.) LSU is interested in Hollier and in a meeting over the summer Les Miles nearly offered the Acadiana defensive back a scholarship. Another weapon on the Acadiana roster is DB and return specialist Micah Eugene (5’11” 195.) Smith, Hollier and Eugune are Acadiana’s top college prospects.
Outlook for 2010
Acadiana plays in one of the best districts in the highest classification in Louisiana. Three of the five teams played in the 2009 state playoffs. And of the two teams who did not qualify, one (Sulfur) is a perennial playoff team and the other (Lafayette) is Acadiana’s crosstown rival. However, look for Acadiana to build on their success and experience of 2009 and win their district in 2010. In fact, according to neworleans.com, every starter and potential starter for Acadiana will be a junior or senior this year.
Once the playoff seedings are announced, Acadiana’s tough schedule will actually work in its favor. In Louisiana, seeding is based on a power ranking, in which schools gain more points for playing a stronger strength of schedule. So not only will Acadiana’s young men be experienced and battle-tested from district play, but they will also get a favorable seed in the 32-team field. However, after coasting through the opening rounds of the playoffs, Acadiana will likely eventually have to face the defending state champions from West Monroe. At that point, Acadiana will likely fall, but not before giving their fans in Lafayette a season to remember.
Dallas Jackson, “2010 – RivalsHigh 100,” rivals.com
“2009 LHSAA Football Playoff Brackets-Class 5A,” lhsaa.org
“Nick Smith,” scout.com
“Bakari Hollier,” scout.com
“Acadiana High School,” neworleans.com
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