There was a time 7-on-7 football was considered to be a distraction that helped high school teams get through the summer.
Now it’s a main attraction.
The three-day adidas State Championship Series for 7-on-7 is scheduled Wednesday through Friday and features 46 high school teams, including 31 competing at St. Amant High School.
“Our goal was to have 40 teams by the second year and we’ve got more than that,” St. Amant High assistant coach Dwayne Thomassee said. “You’ll see some top teams and players from across south Louisiana, which is exciting.
“In Texas, 7-on-7 has become more like an AAU thing, where it’s all-star teams. We think it’s important to keep the high schools involved, and I’m glad to see more and more coaches are catching doing tournaments with their teams.”
Action begins at 10 a.m. Wednesday on six 40-yard fields on the St. Amant campus. Teams will compete through four rounds Wednesday. One more pool round and elimination play begins at 10 a.m. Thursday.
The top six teams advance to the quarterfinals at 10:30 a.m. Friday. Two teams from the 15-team group competing on Wednesday and Thursday at St. Thomas More also advance. The final is set for 12:30 p.m. Friday.
Thomassee said Lutcher is the top seed in the local group. Scotlandville, along with New Orleans’ Landry-Walker and McDonogh 35, are the other seeded teams.
Quarterbacks Jontre Kirklin of Lutcher and Lowell Narcisse of St. James, both 2017 LSU commitments, should attract plenty of attention along with Landry-Walker quarterback Keytaon Thompson, a Mississippi State commitment.
Defensive backs Kelvin Joseph of Scotlandville and Corione Harris of Landry-Walker along with Landry-Walker receiver Devonta Jason are 2018 LSU commitments.
Other notable committed players include: Landry-Walker defensive back Mike Lee (Kansas), Landry-Walker receiver Tevin Bush (West Virginia) and Dunham defensive back Derek Stingley Jr. (LSU 2019).
Here are other 7-on-7 rules:
Game lasts 21 minutes and there is a running clock in the final minute.
Teams must gain 15 yards in three plays to get a first down.
If a quarterback doesn’t throw a pass in four seconds the defense is awarded a sack.
Receivers are considered to be “down” if they’re touched by one or two hands of a defender.
Teams get six points for a touchdown, three for interceptions, two for a conversion of 10 yards or longer, one for PATs from the 3-yard line and two for a defensive stop of a sack.
“It will be fun to watch,” Thomassee said.