Home Sports Class 4M state championship football preview: Columbus vs. Apopka

Class 4M state championship football preview: Columbus vs. Apopka

Class 4M state championship football preview: Columbus vs. Apopka

Class 4M Championship Game

Columbus (13-1) vs. Apopka (11-3)

When, where: 7 p.m. Saturday, DRV PNK Stadium (Fort Lauderdale)

Columbus running back Sedrick Irvin Jr. warms up before playing Jesuit on Friday.


Averages: Scoring 37.1 points per game, allowing 12.9 points per game

Statistical leaders: QB Alberto Mendoza (Jr., 186-256, 2,470 yards, 34 TDs), RB Sedrick Irvin Jr. (Sr., 1,050 yards, 10 TDs), WR Jose Leon (Jr., 38 catches, 569 yards, 11 TDs), LB Ja’Juan Bradsahw (Sr., 62 tackles, 3 TFL)

Postseason: Beat Miami 64-0 (regional quarterfinal), beat Miami Palmetto 28-0 (regional semifinal), beat Doral Academy 31-3 (regional final), beat Ocoee 41-36 (state semifinal)

Signature wins: Benedictine (GA) 41-15 (Aug. 26), Jesuit 32-15 (Sept. 9), Miami Northwestern 23-19 (Sept. 22), Homestead 21-6 (Oct. 7)

Recruit to watch: LB/EDGE TJ Capers. The 6-foot-2, 230-pound Capers is widely considered one of the nation’s top players in the class of 2024. Capers, whose offers include Alabama, Florida, Florida State, Georgia and Miami, has 40 tackles and five sacks this season.

Apopka quarterback Tyson Davison (12) runs the ball in to the end zone for a touchdown during the Class 4M state semi-final between host Palm Beach Central and Apopka on Friday, December 2, 2022, in Wellington, FL. Final score, Apopka, 27, Palm Beach Central, 24.


Averages: Scoring 20.3 points per game, allowing 16 points per game

Statistical leaders: QB Tyson Davison (Fr., 49-117, 580 yards, 5 TDs), RB Zeldrick Roberts (Sr., 920 yards, 14 TDs), WR Nathan Jenkins III (Jr., 18 catches, 147 yards, 1 touchdown), LB Rashad Watson (Sr., 141 tackles, 9 TFL)

Postseason: Beat Boone 17-3 (regional quarterfinal), beat Winter Park 28-7 (regional semifinal), beat Lake Mary 30-23 (regional final), beat Palm Beach Central 27-24 (state semifinal)

Signature wins: Ocoee 13-12 (Aug. 26), Seminole 24-23 (Nov. 1)

Recruit to watch: EDGE/DL Kaven Call. The 6-foot-3, 245-pound Call can line up at multiple spots in the front seven, but almost certainly will play as an edge rusher or defensive tackle at UCF. Call has 51 tackles, eight tackles for loss, eight sacks and three fumble recoveries this season.

Inside the matchup

This is a rematch of the 2019 state championship game, which Columbus rallied to win 21-20. Apopka is playing in its third state championship in the past five years; Columbus is playing in its third in six years. Columbus has won five in a row since a one-score loss to nationally ranked Miami Central on Oct. 21. Apopka has won nine of its past 10 games. Columbus has scored at least three touchdowns in every game this season and has scored at least 28 points in seven consecutive games. Apopka has played in nine games decided by seven points or less this season and has a 7-2 record in those games.


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