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Thursday, August 18, 2011
4A No. 2: Denton Ryan boasts dominating D

By Jeff Andrews

4A NO. 2: DENTON RYAN RAIDERS

2010 record: 15-1

Predicted 2011 regular-season record: 10-0

ESPNDallas.com spring ranking: No. 2

Edwards
Top-ranked Mario Edwards Jr. isn't the only big-time recruit on Denton Ryan's defense.
Division I commits: DE Mario Edwards (Florida State), LB Alex De La Torre (Texas), LB Jordan Richmond (Texas A&M), DE Dominique Banks (Baylor)

Why they’re here: Not many opposing quarterbacks will be able to maintain bladder control lining up against Denton Ryan this year.

Mario Edwards, the No. 1 recruit in the nation, lines up on one end of the defensive line. Banks, a Baylor commit, lines up on the other end.

Don't even ask if the Raiders decide to bring some heat with a blitz in their 4-2-5 defense. That's two three-year starters who are headed to the Big 12 coming at you in De La Torre and Richmond.

And if the quarterback actually manages to get the ball out of his hands before getting crunched? Ball-hawk safety Trey Mohair, a two-sport star who's been Ryan's starting point guard since he was a freshman, might just take it the other way for six.

Those five returning starters, the primary defensive players who fueled Ryan's run to the Class 4A Division I state title game in 2010, give the Raiders the foundation for what may be the best defense in the state -- 4A or 5A.

Holes to fill: For the second straight year, Ryan will have turnover at the most important position on the field -- quarterback. Kevin Carpenter will run the offense after serving as a backup last season. Ryan plans to take advantage of his running ability.

Key game: at Wichita Falls Rider, Oct. 6