No. 3 Byrd Faces No. 30 West Jefferson in Playoffs
It's time for the Class 5A state high school football playoffs. The No. 3 seeded Byrd Yellow Jackets will play host to the No. 30 seeded West Jefferson Buccaneers in the first round. The Yellow Jackets will play Friday night at 7 at Lee Hedges Stadium.
The Yellow Jackets own a 9-0 overall record and garnered the No. 3 seed in the playoffs. The Jackets captured the District 1-5A title, after last Friday’s 52-17 win over the Airline Vikings. It’s Byrd’s first district title since 2002. The West Jeff Buccaneers own a 7-3 overall record and are the No. 30 seed in the playoffs. The Bucs finished with a 1-3 record in District 9-5A record following last week’s 29-28 loss to the Jesuit Blue Jays.
The Byrd Yellow Jackets won the District 1-5A title and finished the regular season undefeated after crushing the Airline Vikings 52-17 in the regular season finale. Fullback Xavier Long rushed for a game-high 131 yards and two touchdowns to lead Byrd.
The West Jefferson Buccaneers lost a 29-28 heart breaker to the Jesuit Blue Jays in last Saturday’s regular season finale. Jesuit scored with just 13 seconds remaining in the game and opted to go for the two-point conversion and the win. Jesuit quarterback Cameron Dobbins ran it in for the two-point conversion and the Blue Jays win.
This will be the first-ever meeting between Byrd and West Jefferson.
Despite never having played the Buccaneers, the Yellow Jackets have played at West Jefferson’s home stadium. Byrd beat the John Ehret Patriots 34-28 at Hoss Memtsas Stadium in the 2006 playoffs.
Mike Suggs is in his 14th season as the head coach at C.E. Byrd. Suggs owns a 93-57 (.620) record as the top Jacket. He is the school’s all-time winingest coach with 93 victories.
Suggs was the Class 5A Coach of Year and the District 2-5A Coach of the Year in 2002. Suggs was an All-State end for the Southwood Cowboys in 1980 before taking his talents on to Northeast Louisiana
University where he played wide receiver for the Indians.
He served as a graduate assistant coach with the Indians’ 1987 National Championship team. After a two-year stint at Southwood, he came to Byrd in 1990. In 1998, Suggs replaced Alan Carter to
become the 13th head coach in Byrd history.
Suggs and his wife Sandy have a daughter Cali, a senior cheerleader at Byrd, and a son Andrew, who is an eighth grader at Caddo Middle Magnet.
West Jefferson is coached by Marcus Scott, who is in his fourth season at the helm of the Buccaneers’ football program. Scott compiled a 19-13 record in his previous three seasons at West Jefferson.
You can hear Friday's game beginning at 6:30 for pregame and kickoff at 7 on your home for Byrd High School football, AM 1130, KWKH.
You can also go to KWKHonline.com and click on the Listen Live link.
Byrd has jumped from No. 62 to No. 54 in the nation in the latest RivalsHigh 100 rankings. The Jackets are No. 2 in the latest PelicanPreps.com Overall Top 10 Poll.