The Plaquemine Green Devils Once Again Try to Show Their Dominance in District Play
by Jace LeJeune
Over the last seven years, there have been few teams as dominant in their district such as the Plaquemine High School Green Devils under their Head Coach Paul Distefano. In that time span, the Green Devils won four straight District 6-4A championships from 2013 to 2016. It is an even more impressive feat knowing that football powerhouse programs such as Parkview Baptist High School and Lutcher High School have joined the district in recent years. 2017 was the first year since 2012 that the Green Devils did not finish atop their district standings. This season, the district remains to be wide open and hopefully, the Green Devils will be there for the taking. The team has the senior talent to win the district championship and become a factor in the Class 4A state championship race once again. There has always been an appreciation for the talent that the Green Devils have produced just over the last five years. Guys that come to mind are DT Davon Godchaux (LSU/Miami Dolphins), safety Todd Harris (LSU), DE Nelson Jenkins (LSU), CB Percy Butler (ULL), ATH Wayne Toussant (Louisiana Tech), WR Andre Riley (ULL), RB Julius Maracalin (Southeastern), RB Kevin Dominique (Grambling), OL Kevin Dotson (ULL), DE Kenny Dotson (Nicholls State), and ATH Austin Mitchell (Southeastern). This year, it looks like this talented program will add on its list of names after the season most notably guys like senior linebacker Herman Christophe (6-0, 225), senior WR Dontayvion Wicks (6-2, 200), senior CB J’Vonte Powers (5-9, 165), and senior offensive guard Brockhim Wicks (6-2, 305), who have all either received offers or is committed somewhere. Louisiana Football Magazine’s recruiting specialist Lee Brecheen loves what he sees in Christophe as he put the All-District linebacker on the cover of our South Louisiana magazine edition.
“I think Herman Christophe is one of the best linebackers in the state,” Brecheen said. “Christophe reads and is really explosive with his hips like he is only 200 pounds. He also is a really tough moxy kid that tackles from sideline to sideline with 4.7/40 speed.”
Arguably, Christophe is the team’s best player, but only Southeastern, Louisiana Tech, and Northwestern State are the only schools to show interest in him. According to Coach Distefano, there is a reason for the lack of attention going to the really talented senior linebacker. so he has not been able to go to a lot of the football camps over the summer, which has hurt him just a little bit in recruiting.
“Over the summer, Herman plays baseball for us,” Distefano said. “Because of that, he has not been able to go to a lot of the football camps over the summer, which has hurt him just a little bit in recruiting.”
Still with more game film at the end of this season, more colleges will be paying more attention to #29. Somebody that is getting a lot of attention on the offensive side of the football is Dontayvion Wicks. At 6-2, 200 pounds, Wicks is a big target and made some impressive catches in a Week 5 loss against Ouachita Parish High School. So far, Wicks has received offers from Southeastern, Northwestern State, Nicholls State, and Prairie View A&M. Even though Wicks is still waiting on his first DI offer, he has really shown commitment to the teams that have shown him interest in him.
“I feel like I am a great fit for all of their offenses,” Wicks said. “I really just look at the playing environment, the distance from home, and the coaching.”
Another Wicks that will be making a big decision on National Signing Day is senior offensive guard Brockhim Wicks, who has received offers from McNeese State, Southeastern, Nicholls State, Grambling, Southeast Missouri State, Prairie View A&M, and Northwestern State. Brecheen loves the Plaquemine Green Devil offensive line as a whole especially with Wicks leading the way.
“Brockhim Wicks is a DI player all day long,” Brecheen said. “I love this kid’s demeanor and feet. Wicks is a strong and tough player that moves well with a 5.1/40 at over 300 pounds.”
The good news for the Green Devils is that this offensive line has a lot of experience playing together. The bad news is that most of them will be gone next year. Fellow offensive linemen O’Darious Jackson (5-11, 250) and Zayien Bouvay (6-1, 298) are two other centerpieces of the offensive line that the team cannot afford to lose since they are both four year starters.
“Just being a four year starter and a senior leader is an accomplishment within itself,” Bouvay said. “Being able to play multiple positions and my reaction to the snap on defense makes myself really valuable.”
“Being a four year starter, my quickness and football I.Q. has gotten better each year,” Jackson said. “I am just an all around good person to have on somebody’s team.”
The three veteran linemen upfront are always good to have, but it is also great to have some skill players, which Plaquemine does have. Senior quarterback Herb Thomas (5-10, 175) returns this season after recovering from a near career ending injury and has looked better each and every game. J’Vonte Powers has been the really big surprise of the spring and has had himself a great senior season. So much so, he has received an offer from Southeastern and has committed to the Lions. SS Trey Leblanc (5-11, 180), RB Dallas Ropati (5-11, 190), and DB Vincent Collins are other senior skill players that have a chance to play at the collegiate level. There is no doubt that the Green Devils can win district and make a push towards the playoffs, but in order to do that, they must finish the second half of the regular season strong after an up and down 3-2 start against a very tough opponent in the Parkview Baptist Eagles.
“We need to stay on each other more about having fun on the field instead of holding down heads and come out fast instead of coming out slow,” Wicks said.
“We just need to do the little things right and just hold everyone accountable for their responsibility,” Bouvay said. “It’s all up to us this year. We can go as far as we let ourselves. We hold our own faith.”
“We are going to be alright for district and the playoffs,” Jackson said. “If the seniors stay positive, the rest of the team will follow.”
A couple of years ago, Coach Distefano came up with the team motto, which was “We is Greater Than Me.” Well, if the team embraces that slogan, then this team will be very dangerous not only in district, but beyond.
Hey football fans. Like our recruiting interviews, stories, and other content on our website? Click on our website daily to view articles on recruits, coaches, and so much more at our website: http://www.lafootballmagazine.com/. Also, we have exciting news that for the second straight year, we will have our North and South LA issues and both are now out! Both issues will continue to cover all the Louisiana colleges as well as all the high schools in state, but there will be 16 pages that will focus on North Louisiana as well as South Louisiana. For more information, please check the following link to where you can find the magazine in a store near you. Also, below are the two covers as well as where you can order both magazines on our website.
Stores Link: http://www.lafootballmagazine.com/news/c48-recruiting/2018-louisiana-football-magazine-north-and-south-editions-now-available-in-stores-near-you/
North Cover: South Cover:
North Link: http://www.lafootballmagazine.com/product/la-football-magazine-2018-annual-preview-north-edition/
South Link: http://www.lafootballmagazine.com/product/la-football-magazine-2018-annual-preview-south-edition/