Last weekend a star was born, who lit up the Friday night lights over Houston.
Elkins High School, which is headlined by Texas A&M verbal commit Daniel Baker, turned the quarterbacking reigns over to a special sophomore who is ready for varsity football in the state of Texas.
Sophomore quarterback Broderick Thomas, Jr., entered the contest against Alvin High School and scored on his first play from scrimmage. While Elkins fell 35-31, Thomas finished with 247 yards on 12 carries and three touchdowns.
Thomas (6-3, 180-pounds) was the starting freshman team quarterback last season and has transitioned into a hot Division I prospect for the years to come.
"I was surprised at his early success," Elkins coach Robert Crevallari said. "In three years, everybody will want this kid. Our offense is like Texas Tech's and lends itself to a quarterback that can run and throw the ball. He can run and he's learning to throw."
The Thomas name is no stranger to high school football in Houston. His father, Broderick Thomas, Sr., was a star at Madison High School and the University of Nebraska, before being drafted by Tampa Bay sixth in the early 1990s.
"I know it's early but I like LSU," Thomas said. "I'm going to take a look around, but I like the Tigers."
While Thomas lit up the scoreboard on offense, another NFL legacy anchored the defense. Junior linebacker Alonzo Highsmith (6-3, 190-pounds) is a rangy backer who covers a lot of ground on defense. Highsmith moved from San Antonio to Houston last spring and earned a position right away.
And down the street at Hightower High School is his brother A.J. Highsmith, a 5-foot-11, 175-pound sophomore starting quarterback. Their father starred for the University of Miami and the Houston Oilers in the late 1990s.
"For my kids football is easy," Alonzo Highsmith, Green Bay Packer player personnel and college scout said. "They are under some pressure to live up to the Highsmith name, but what I want for them is to be a great people and a great students. Football will take care of itself.
"What I see is wrong with football is that in high school to the pros, we aren't teaching the game of football. We are looking for potential, not smart football players. There are so many great athletes that don't have the mental part of the game and it catches up to them at some point. So many kids get left back because of grades and not being quality people."
With the emergence of Thomas, senior running back Michael Simpers should have another breakout season. Simpers (5-10, 175-pounds) is one of the area's top returning rushers, compiling over 1,000 yards last season. He also has scored an 1170 on the SAT and a 27 on the ACT.
At Elkins, I guess they are looking at Highsmith's formula of smart, quality football players.