Guyer doesn't go into many games as a consensus underdog. But with No. 1 Allen coming to C.H. Collins Athletic Complex on Friday night, the Wildcats are looking to pull off an upset.
Guyer (4-2, 2-1 District 6-6A) has never beaten the Eagles, and Allen (6-0, 3-0) enters this year 3-0 in the all-time series.
"I feel great," Guyer coach John Walsh said. "We're playing the year-in, year-out favorites of the district, and we're healthy except for one guy [cornerback Kaleel Rhoden]. We don't get to play the role of the underdog much, and it's a fun role for us to play this week."
The Wildcats are coming off their best first-half performance of the season last week after jumping out to a commanding 28-7 lead against previously unbeaten McKinney. Aside from a 78-yard touchdown pass early in the first quarter, Guyer held the Lions to 6 total yards in the half while scoring on their first four possessions.
But things cooled off in the third quarter as the Wildcats fumbled on the opening possession of the second half. Seth Meador intercepted a pass on the next play, but Guyer was forced to settle for a field goal despite driving to the 1-yard line.
The offense was unable to get anything going after that, and despite winning 31-14, Walsh and the Wildcats know they can't make the same mistakes against a loaded Allen team.
"We have to play a complete game," Walsh said. "If we doing anything of that sort in this game, Allen fans will be getting home early and getting their Whataburger before the big rush gets there."
Guyer won't change much offensively despite the challenges Allen brings to the table. The Wildcats are the top Class 6A rushing team in the area averaging more than 320 yards per game.
Sophomore Kaedric Cobbs has rushed for 846 yards and 17 touchdowns while quarterback Luke Stillwell has 369 yards and three scores on the ground.
The key will be taking care of the ball against an Allen defense that is allowing only 124.5 yards rushing per game. The Guyer offensive line has had its way for the majority of the season, but the Wildcats have turned the ball over seven times in their past three games.
"It's just huge," Walsh said. "Those lead guys, Kaedric and Luke, and really anyone who carries the ball, cannot turn it over. Allen will capitalize. They're going to get some points, but we can't give them free points."
Allen's offense is averaging more than 40 points per game behind the duo of quarterback Grant Tisdale (1,297 yards, 15 touchdowns) and running back Brock Sturges (724 yards, 12 touchdowns), while Carson Schleker (388 yards, six scores) and Theo Wease (381 yards, seven touchdowns) are explosive weapons on the perimeter.
The Eagles' talented offense has scored 11 touchdowns longer than 30 yards out this season, including 80- and 90-yard strikes against Plano last week.
"The No. 1 thing is we cannot give up the home-run plays," Walsh said. "We have to make them use the clock we way we do. They'd be a challenge for anybody in the country to play, but we're accepting that challenge."
What you need to know
Matchup: Guyer vs. Allen
When: 7:30 p.m. Friday
Where: C.H. Collins Athletic Complex
What happened last year: Guyer lost 42-7
Brady Keane — Guyer 38, Allen 37
Steve Gamel — Guyer 45, Allen 41
Jimmy Isbell — Allen 49, Guyer 14
Clay Massey — Allen 42, Guyer 21