Airline’s Hayden Hildebrand, who has made a verbal commitment to Central Arkansas, completed 124 of 205 (.605) passes for 1,993 yards and 18 touchdowns in the Vikings’ first eight games this season.
Haughton’s James David Almond, who has made a commitment to Northwestern State, completed 86 of 142 passes (.606) for 1,551 yards and 16 touchdowns, and Parkway’s Brandon Harris completed 87 of 173 (.503 for 1,463 yards and 16 touchdowns.
Hildebrand boosted his three-year career total to 6,451 yards and 59 touchdown passes.
When Woodlawn’s Joe Ferguson broke state and national records in 1968, he finished his career with 6,710 yards passing and 86 touchdown passes. Since then, three Evangel quarterbacks have moved to the top of the all-time state list. Brock Berlin had 13,902 yards passing and 145 touchdown passes. Josh Booty had 11,700 yards passing and 126 touchdown passes. Phillip Deas (now the Evangel coach) had 11,324 yards passing and 138 touchdown passes.
Two other Louisiana quarterbacks who have surpassed Ferguson’s records are the Manning brothers of Newman (New Orleans), sons of former Saints quarterback Archie Manning. Eli Manning had 7,268 yards passing and 77 touchdown passes. Peyton Manning had 7,190 yards passing and 92 touchdown passes. With more Louisiana high schools throwing a lot more passes in recent years, Ferguson has dropped to No. 8 on the all-time state career passing yardage list.
Airline became the first team to hold Parkway under 36 points this season last Friday night, beating the previously unbeaten Panthers 31-13. That means nobody in Bossier Parish will be unbeaten this season, as Parkway was the only unbeaten team after the first seven weeks.
“Football is an up-and-down game,” Airline coach Bo Meeks said after his Vikings handed the Panthers their only “down” thus far in the season. “The first half offensively was about as good as we can play.”
Defensively, the entire game was about as good for the Vikings as anybody can play.
In rushing yardage, Zach Pierson of Benton has 146 carries for 860 yards through the first eight games of the season, averaging 5.9 yards per carry. Others have higher averages, but not as much total yardage. Haughton’s Jarred Craft has 92 carries for 735 yards, an average of 8.0 yards per attempt.
Of course, the most important numbers for all of the parish teams are the win-loss records for each team — 7-1 for Airline and Parkway, 6-2 for Haughton, 5-3 for Bossier High and Louisiana New Tech (Plain Dealing), 3-5 for Benton.
Airline is all alone at the top of District 1-5A standings with a 3-0 record in district play, while Benton and Fair Park share fourth place in District 1-4A with 1-2 district records and Bossier High shares the District 1-3A lead with North DeSoto as both are 1-0 in district play. Louisiana New Tech (Plain Dealing) is runner-up to Haynesville in District 1-A.
Defensive play in the final two weeks of regular-season play is likely to determine which parish teams qualify for the state playoffs, and how they are seeded.
But no Bossier Parish team has finished a season in the Louisiana Superdome since the Louisiana High School Athletic Association moved its championship games to the Dome in 1981, and that streak isn’t likely to end this year.