1-5A Football Preview: Airline Chosen To Repeat As District Champion

by Hunter Bower, GeauxPreps.com Owner

2023 District 1-5A Preseason Coaches’ Poll

PlaceSchool (first-place votes)Points
1.Airline (6)69
2.C.E. Byrd58
3.Captain Shreve (2)57
T6.Natchitoches Central43
District 1-5A head coaches voted on how they thought teams will finish in 2023.
Coaches could not vote for their own team.

As the anticipation for the upcoming high school football season builds, the coaches of District 1-5A have cast their votes in a preseason poll that offers intriguing insights into how they believe the league will shape up at the end of the regular season. With defending champion Airline claiming the top spot, the competition is fierce, and the excitement is palpable as teams gear up for a challenging campaign.

Airline’s Pursuit of Back-to-Back Glory:

The Airline Vikings, reigning district champions, find themselves once again leading the pack in the preseason poll. Despite the departure of key starters from last year’s title-winning squad, Airline’s focus remains on a repeat performance. The challenge lies in harnessing the potential of their underclassmen, as they look to step up and fill the shoes of their predecessors. The success of the Vikings hinges on the ability of these rising stars to embrace leadership roles and contribute effectively on both sides of the ball.

Captain Shreve’s Determined Drive:

Captain Shreve, buoyed by two first-place votes, emerges as a formidable contender to seize the district title. Armed with 12 returning starters, the Gators possess a core of experienced players. Their challenge, however, is to fill crucial gaps on offense and defense left by departing players. The team’s work ethic and attitude are identified as pivotal factors that will shape their journey toward the championship. Captain Shreve’s determination to overcome obstacles and maximize their potential could prove decisive in the race for the title.

C.E. Byrd’s New Challenge:

C.E. Byrd, a consistent presence at the upper echelons of District 1-5A, faces a transitional phase this season. With only two starters returning from last year’s squad, the Yellow Jackets are set to undergo a significant transformation. However, the team benefits from a cadre of players who have gained experience on both sides of the ball. The ability of these players to seamlessly transition into starting roles will determine C.E. Byrd’s fate in the 2023 season. The Yellow Jackets’ rich history and determination to adapt to new challenges make them an intriguing wildcard in the title race.

Natchitoches Central’s Redemption Story:

One of the most compelling narratives of the offseason revolves around Natchitoches Central. Under the guidance of state championship coach Jess Curtis, the program aims to rise from its struggles and contend for the district crown. Curtis, known for his impact on Many High School, has brought renewed energy and a buzz to Natchitoches. With aspirations to not only compete but also secure a district title, Natchitoches Central aims to silence doubters and write a redemption story that captures the city’s attention.

Midfield Contenders: Benton, Haughton, and Parkway:

While Airline, Captain Shreve, and C.E. Byrd are the frontrunners, teams like Benton, Haughton, and Parkway refuse to be overshadowed. Benton must find cohesion early in the season after losing key players in recent years. Haughton, known for its defensive prowess, faces the task of replenishing offensive positions. Parkway’s youth at key offensive positions is balanced by a formidable defense, led by LSU commit Aeron Burrell, the nation’s No. 1 kicker.

Southwood’s Pursuit of Rejuvenation:

Southwood, under seasoned head coach Mike Green, embarks on a journey to rejuvenate its program. With a focus on instilling pride and a winning mentality, the Cowboys are determined to defy expectations. Coach Green’s commitment to cultivating a new era of Southwood football hinges on player buy-in and a renewed team spirit. As the Cowboys work towards their goals, they remain a potential upset factor in a district filled with fierce competitors.

The District 1-5A coaches’ preseason poll offers a tantalizing preview of the high-stakes battles and intriguing storylines that lie ahead in the upcoming football season. With defending champions, determined contenders, and underdog narratives, fans can expect an electrifying race for the district title as teams take to the field and lay it all on the line.