Coming off of a 4-6 season, Little Rock Parkview enters 2020 with some added motivation knowing they were on the brink of a playoff berth after 4 of their 6 losses being within a touchdown or less.
In week one, they fell to Springdale 24-21, 35-28 to Maumelle in week 5, 44-40 to Watson Chapel in week 6, and 28-27 to White Hall in week 9.
The Patriots are moving up from the 5A Central to the 6A West, and head coach Brad Bolding sees the positives of that. “I’m excited about it,” Bolding said. “Getting away from PA and Little Rock Christian, it was not that I was worried about playing them. They are good every year, but I have coached at dang near every level in Arkansas football and 5A is very tough.”
Parkview was picked by Hooten’s Arkansas Football to finish fourth in their conference and selected sixth overall for class 6A. Things will not get easier as they will be playing in the same league as consistent state powerhouse Greenwood, 6A favorite Benton, and 3rd-ranked Lake Hamilton.
“In our conference they take six teams and four of those have home playoff games which is something we are not used to,” Bolding stated. “We feel like we have the talent, we just have to stay healthy and one thing that is helping us this year is we only have one or two guys playing both ways. That will make a huge difference.”
With eight starters returning both offensively and defensively, the Patriots are not lacking experience. Senior quarterback Landon Rogers, junior running back James Jointer, and senior tight end Erin Outley have all received high praise and are major college prospects.
Rogers and Outley are committed to the Razorbacks for the class of ’21. Jointer has offers from Arkansas, Florida State, Kansas, Missouri, among others and per 247 Sports is the 34th-ranked running back for the class of 2022.
With opposing defenses expected to key on those three players, that should open up the offense for others to succeed. “We’ve got some really good receivers too who have flown under the radar,” Bolding stated. “From my years of coaching defense, you have to pick your poison on who you want to defend. You can’t stop everyone.”
Junior Jalon Smith is a receiver Bolding mentioned who the coaches expect to turn heads. “He has elite speed that you can not coach and we have been working on the deep ball with him.”
The offensive line will be anchored by senior Jared Summons, who earned a spot on the Steve Landers Auto Group Super Team. Bolding believes Summons could develop into a college prospect.
Defensively, Bolding expects junior safeties Jaylon White and Trent Bennett to make some major noise. White is “6’4 and has the look of an SEC free safety.”
Bennett moved to Plano, TX after the season and then later returned to the team. “I think he will be a Division I player,” Bolding mentioned. Bennett can also move down to play linebacker and has received interest from the Razorbacks.
Parkview opens up their season on September 4th at Little Rock Southwest.
Published by Kyle Sutherland, @sutherland54WPS on Twitter