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Great Expectations: #1 QB Arch Manning kicks off GameTime 2022

#1 Quarterback recruit and Texas Longhorn commitment leads the Newman Greenies against the Hahnville Tigers

What a way to kick off the 2022 GameTime season by getting a chance to see the nation’s number one player in action. Arch Manning and the Newman Greenies hit the road to face the Hahnville Tigers in a non-district matchup. Manning enters the season as the nation’s top player in the 2023 recruiting class.

The son of Cooper Manning, the grandson of Archie Manning, and the nephew of Peyton and Eli Manning is heading to Texas after a low-key verbal pledge to the Longhorns in June.

Manning is trying to do something that Peyton, Eli, and Odell Beckham Junior could never do at Newman and that’s winning a state championship.

The school in Uptown New Orleans believes this could be the year as Manning is the total package at quarterback. He has the smarts, likes studying game film, has the arm strength, the quick release, and has the mobility to lead the Greenies to a Division III championship.

Manning is not the only Newman Greenie heading to Texas. There’s also one of Arch’s close friends, Will Randle. The sky’s the limit for the six-foot-four tight end who has big play potential. He’s also a physical player, a great blocker, and an outstanding pass rusher.

Newman also features a couple of good running backs in senior captain Will Zurik, who has gotten bigger and catches the ball well. Also, Eli Friend could be the next big star at Newman as he’s the heir apparent to Arch Manning, but he’ll see the field this year because he’s just too talented not to use.

Head coach Nelson Stewart is really excited about his offensive line. He says it’s a physical group, led by tackle Brett Bordelon, whose older brother Bo Bordelon is at LSU. Heid Manning, the brother of Arch, is a good athlete guard, Center Nick Lovell is a physical player. Guard Brandon Wilkins was a nose guard last year and can push people around at 6-3, 290 pounds. The other tackle is Landon Montano, who deadlifts 500 pounds.

Stewart also feels good about his defense. On the defensive line, Ramaj Waiters is hard to block. The four-year starter is six-foot-one with good instincts, and excellent hand technique comes off the ball well, and plays low.

Middle linebacker Robert Kerrigan is an old-school player who fills gaps and is a sure tackler.

The cornerbacks are good on this Newman team. Austin Guillory is committed to Harvard, runs a 4.5, is very strong, and plays aggressively. The other cornerback, D.J. Thomas, is a junior but could play at the next level too as he has excellent speed.

For the Hahnville Tigers, third-year head coach Daniel Luquet is looking for a normal season. Luquet’s first season in Boutte was the COVID year and then last year, St. Charles Parish was hammered by Hurricane Ida. The Tigers didn’t play until week four of the regular season.

Everything looked good going into this year, but quarterback Donovan Friloux suffered a knee injury during the third series of the jamboree. Friloux’s injury means Ryan Gregson will direct the offense. He’s the starting second baseman on the baseball team and is described as a cerebral player and an accurate thrower.

Hahnville has three running backs to help carry the load on offense. Calvin Smith is a physical back at 200 pounds, Chase Brooks is their speed guy and Josh Joseph can catch passes and he’ll play a little bit in the slot.

The Tigers’ offense gets a boost this year with the return of Dakota Williams, a commitment to Tulane. He tore his ACL in the first game of the season last year after catching two passes. He’s a hard worker that will likely get 15 touches a game, because of his 4.45 speed. Luquet believes Williams is the best receiver in the state when healthy.

Titus White is another weapon on offense. He’s one of those guys who can make a defender miss in a phone booth.

Hahnville’s offensive line returns only one starter, Nathan Brevelle, but Luquet likes the depth he’s been able to build up during preseason camp. The left side features a couple of seniors, but they’ve not started on the varsity level.

The defense is led by Cincere Simmons. He’s been a starter since his sophomore season. A second-team All-State player last year. Tough kid, who is quick, physical, and can wreak havoc. Southern Miss, La Tech, Grambling, and McNeese are some of the teams interested in Simmons.

There are three new starters at linebacker, but Hahnville returns three starters in the secondary. Cornerback Alavan Sam is healthy after missing last season with a torn labrum. Sam played a lot as a sophomore and he’ll match up against the other team’s best player. Ahmand Simmons is also another good player, who didn’t play last season because of Hurricane Ida.

Both these teams are looking forward to this matchup as they want to get tested early in the season. It should be an exciting match-up between two tradition-rich schools. Kick-off is at 7 PM.

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