Division I State Championship Preview: C.E. Byrd vs Catholic-BR

by Hunter Bower // GeauxPreps.com Owner

A special thanks to Louisiana vs. All Y’all for contributing coach and player quotes.

No. 3 C.E. Byrd (10-0) vs. No. 4 Catholic-BR (8-2)

Sunday, Dec. 27 | 6:00 p.m. | Harry “Rags” Turpin Stadium | Northwestern State University | Natchitoches, Louisiana | Partly Cloudy, 61 degrees, Wind: S 6MPH
Live Stats | Watch – NFHS Network ($) | Listen (C.E. Byrd Broadcast) | Listen (Catholic-BR Broadcast)

C.E. Byrd Preview:

Head Coach: Mike Suggs 

State Championships: 1926, 1930, 1931, 1934, 1935, 1937, 1949

Last Finals Appearance: 2013 (lost to Rummel, 23-22)

Road To Natchitoches:

  • Quarterfinals: Beat St. Augustine, 31-14
  • Semi-Finals: Beat John Curtis, 14-13

The Skinny:

• C.E. Byrd is looking to capture its first state title since 1949. The Yellow Jackets have seven total championships dating back to 1926.

• Byrd’s regular season schedule consisted of five teams who advanced to the postseason. It’s season opening opponent, Calvary Baptist is contending for the Division IV state title.

• Head coach Mike Suggs is playing in his second championship game with the Yellow Jackets. If successful, Byrd could become the first Shreveport/Bossier City football squad, not named Evangel or Calvary Baptist, to bring home a state title since 1976.


“This is going to be a very physical game and will require a lot of effort on our part. We have to be great on offense, defense, and special teams. If we can do everything right then we have a chance to come out with a victory.” – Byrd DL Carson Bruno 

Catholic-BR Preview:

Head Coach: Gabe Fertitta 

State Championships: 2015, 2017

Last Finals Appearance: 2019 (lost to Rummel, 14-10)

Road To Natchitoches:

  • Quarterfinals: Beat Rummel, 42-35
  • Semi-Finals: Beat Brother Martin, 49-31

The Skinny:

• The Catholic High Bears are competing for the Division I state championship for a fourth consecutive year. Their last state title victory came in 2017 with a 20-14 win over John Curtis.

• A chaotic season filled with last-minute game cancellations allowed Catholic the opportunity to face off against some of the top teams in the state such as University, Edna Karr, St. Thomas More, Acadiana and Ruston. The combined winning percentage of all eight regular season foes was an outstanding 68% (36-17).

• Catholic is led by outstanding rusher George Hart who has 707 yards and 13 TDs on the season while sophomore QB Daniel Beale has nine touchdowns in six games with 662 passing yards.


“Every kid’s dream in high school is to go out on top in their sport. Obviously, every year you want to do that, but you especially want to for your senior year. That is the goal that we want to try and accomplish on Sunday.” – Catholic DB Michael Cerniauskas 

Distance To Turpin Stadium: C.E. Byrd (73 miles),Catholic-BR (182 miles)