Star running back Jase McClellan will look to add to his exploits when he leads Aledo (TX) into a high-profile matchup with Bentonville (AR) on Saturday at the Battle on the Border in Shreveport, La.
Who: Aledo (TX) vs. Bentonville (AR)
Where: Independence Bowl, Shreveport, LA
When: Saturday, Sept. 8 at 3 PM CT
Watch: LIVE on FloFootball
Aledo (TX) rode into the 2018 season with championship aspirations, and if the Bearcats’ season-opening performance against Denton Guyer was any indication, those expectations are well-founded.
Aledo hammered what is perennially a sound Guyer squad, handing the Wildcats their first shutout loss since 2006.
Five-star running back Jase McClellan had his way in the win, rushing for 99 yards and two scores on 15 carries—and was given the second half of the night off.
On the heels of a 10-win season that ended with a state championship loss to North Little Rock, Bentonville has had a much rockier start to 2018.
The Tigers dropped their season opener to Midwest City (OK) in overtime before falling to Conway (AR) to the second time in as many seasons. The two-game losing streak is Bentonville’s first since a season-opening four-game losing streak in 2014—in what would be legendary Barry Lunney’s last season as head coach.
That year, the Tigers rebounded to win their final nine games en route to another Arkansas state championship.
Jase McClellan Is Must-See TV
For those who cannot be in attendance at the Independence Bowl Stadium in Shreveport, McClellan, alone, is well worth the price of a Saturday afternoon matinee.
The 5-10, 200-pound Oklahoma-commit is a home run waiting to happen, who has dominated Texas high school football for the better part of his career. Just a junior, McClellan has already surpassed 3,000 yards and may hit 50 touchdowns during this road trip to Louisiana.
Put another way, he’s more Incredibles 2, less Jurassic World.
McClellan’s Not Necessarily A One-Man Show
Junior quarterback Jake Bishop is smart and efficient with the football and he has a pair of excellent weapons in wide receiver JoJo Earle and versatile skill player Tre Owens.
Earle, just a sophomore, caught eight passes for 105 yards and two touchdowns in the win over Denton Guyer. His emergence has lessened the blow of losing Money Parks to All Saints Episcopal.
And, while the tendency may be to focus on the Bearcats high-flying offense entirely, we’d be remiss if we failed to mention the defense responsible for that noteworthy shutout last week. The unit is strong, and features one of the best defensive ends in the state, TCU-commit Colt Ellison.
Don’t Sleep On Bentonville
Aledo has the star power, but the Tigers are well-coached with championship pedigree—and starving for a win.
Head coach Jody Grant has won 10 games in each of his first three seasons—including back-to-back trips to the state title game. He has established himself as one of the top minds in Arkansas high school football, and he will have his team prepared and confident heading into Saturday’s game.
Safety Donte Jones is a standout on a defense that has played well in spite less-than-desirable results thus far.
Prospects to Watch
Jase McClellan, RB, Aledo — 5-star, committed to Oklahoma
Colt Ellison, DE, Aledo — 4-star, committed to TCU
Donte Jones, S, Bentonville — 3-star, committed to Tennessee-Martin
JoJo Earle, WR, Aledo — unranked, uncommitted