• 84°

Titans’ newest faces key in keeping offense supercharged

Last season, Memorial’s defense drew a lot of attention for being the most dominant in the district. The Titans allowed the fewest yards per game and earned the largest turnover ratio.

The Titans’ offense was just as impactful, which led to the school’s first undefeated regular season in school history.

This fall, the Titans will return 7-8 starters on the defensive side including University of Texas commit Jaylon Guilbeau and District 9-5A Defensive Player of the Year Christian Thomas.

The Titans offense is also returning key starters such as district MVP Jah’mar Sanders and running back Adrian Hayward.

The Titans graduated two key playmakers on offense — Tyrence Augusta and Tony Brooks.

Memorial offensive coordinator Rashard Colquitt said replacing Augusta and Brooks is not easy.

“Even though we have holes to fill with the guys we lost last year, we feel confident in the guys we have coming up,” he said. “The guys that are replacing those guys played last year, so they have experience.”

Sanders and Colquitt said the offense benefits from practicing against the Titans defense.

“We feel like the offense is going against the best defense in the district every day and that makes us better,” Colquitt said. “…Our receivers are going against Guilbeau. We got our running backs going against our linebackers, who were all-district picks last year. The competition is good and seeing those compete against the No. 1 defense is only going to help us become the offense we want to become.”

Colquitt is excited to see some of the new guys step up.

He said sophomore Quinton Harper is electric.

“(Harper) is going to be a good guy that can change it up a bit,” Colquitt said. “He is versatile. We have Kelby Blanchette. He played in the playoff game last year. He is going to be a starter for us. Najiya Green is a big target. He is about 6’2”, 6’3”. He is going to be a good player for us.”

Sanders believes the newcomers will elevate the team.

“We had JV guys with varsity talent,” he said. “I just think we have receivers now that have stepped up and filled the roles.”

The district MVP expects the offense to stay as dominate as it was last year.

“This year, we have more playmakers,” he said. “We have new people stepping up that have potential to be a big factor on the field.”