Senior strong safety Josh Bryan meets senior running back Derrick Phillips in the hole.
What: Clovis vs. Las Cruces High in a controlled scrimmage. The teams have been scrimmaging each other for more than a decade.
When: 4 p.m. today
Where: Wool Bowl, Roswell
Format: Teams will run 40 plays each and 10 in goal-line situation. No live special teams.
2006 records: Las Cruces 3-7, Clovis 7-4
About Las Cruces: Coming off a down season that included forfeiting two games for using an eligible player, the Bulldawgs return 7 starters on offense and defense. The Bulldawgs, who traditionally have a strong passing game, have a small senior class with 11.
Las Cruces players to watch: Junior Donte Caro takes over at QB. He led the Bulldawgs with 70 catches last season ... Junior RB James Hall rushed from more than 1,000 yards in 2006 ... Senior CB Evan Burns leads a veteran secondary and also plays wide receiver.
About Clovis: The run-oriented Wildcats, who return 9 starters, have to rebuild an offensive line from scratch. The Wildcats also have to shore a secondary that was prone to giving up big plays.
Clovis players to watch: Senior Manuel Robles leads a strong group of RBs ... An all-district guard, senior Dominique Chairez is making the switch to LB ... Senior CB Jaden Isler anchors the secondary.
Switching back: After using a 3-5 defense made popular by the University of New Mexico, the Bulldawgs are switching back to a 5-2. “It fit our personnel better last year,” Las Cruces coach Jim Miller said of the 3-5 defense. “But we’re a little bigger this year. It’s more familiar.”
Las Cruces priorities: Execute on offense. On defense we can’t give up the big play and we make sure we run to the football. — Miller.
Clovis priorities: See how the OL handles its assignments at game speed. Get lined up correctly on defense. The passing game. — Clovis defensive coordinator Darren Kelley.
Coach Miller: “Year in and year out Clovis is one of the best teams in the state. It’s a good starting point for us.”
Coach Kelley: “Las Cruces does a good job of showing us a little bit of everything. They’re going to spread you out some, but they’re also going to line up and run it at you. They’re always a good test.”
Go figure: The Bulldawgs have won three state titles under Miller (1999, 2000, 2002).