At his height, circa 490 B.C., Persian king Darius I ruled over lands stretching from Libya and Macedonia in the west to India and central Asia in the east, south down the Nile River and north up to the Caspian Sea.
On Friday night, Darius Amie, vanguard on the John Tyler defensive line, ruled over an admittedly smaller swath of land, but one that nonetheless turned the tide of battle against border rival Robert E. Lee.
In the Lions' 44-0 decimation of the Red Raiders, Amie set up camp in the backfield of the Red and White, stretching from sideline to sideline, end zone to end zone.
The defensive end dominated Earl Campbell Field, storming past the Lee offensive line to accumulate three sacks, four tackles for loss, one fumble recovery and 11 total tackles.
"His first step was amazing all Friday night," JT coach Ricklan Holmes said.
Though Amie's performance wasn't the only one that aided in the Lions' first shutout of the season, his stood out as JT recorded its first shutout of the year.
The Red Raiders marched into Trinity Mother Frances Rose Stadium with a 2-0 record behind dual-threat quarterback Zach Hall, who was averaging 149 rushing yards per game.
The unrelenting Amie and the rest of the Lions shut down Hall, especially in the second half, holding him to 66 yards. With Hall unable to run, the Lee offense went into retreat.
"We did a great job," Amie said. "We contained him. The whole second half he didn't get anything."
Last year, with Tyus Bowser and Kavante Jefferson manning the defensive end positions, Amie switched from defensive end to linebacker. He's now back at end and improving each game.
At first glance, the 6-1, 205-pound senior appears too slight to fight in the trenches, particularly when he lines up next to teammate TraVaughn Moore (6-3, 295) or across from tackles weighing 350 pounds.
But Amie has a trait that trumps what he lacks in size — speed.
"He's starting to understand the things that he can do with his speed and his quickness and his hands and not always having to fight off blocks," Holmes said. "He's quick enough to where he can give a quick move inside, then he can bust outside.
"He can do that knowing that he doesn't really have the physical brute strength that normal defensive ends would have like Bowser, but he does have that quickness that gives him that added edge going against tackles."
Amie isn't alone with his quickness on the edge. His cohort across the way is fellow defensive end Jassavia Reese. Amie wears jersey No. 9, Reese wears No. 11.
"That's why we've got nine-eleven — so we're like, someone please call 9-1-1," Amie joked. "We're just two good ends. We work hard."
Amie and Reese will be called upon to conquer another dual-threat quarterback when Mesquite Horn comes to town Friday. Jaguars quarterback Destri White ran for 805 yards in 2012, including 6.0 yards per rush in last year's matchup with the Lions.
"He's one of the best," Amie said of White. "If you get to hit one of the best, sack one of the best, then you're up there too, you know you can compete."
Robert E. Lee already knows.
LIONS TALES: With the East Texas State Fair beginning Friday, parking will cost $2 per car for the John Tyler-Mesquite Horn game that night. … Tickets for the JT-Horn game will be sold on campus to students and faculty Wednesday and Thursday. Additional ticket sales will be at the TISD athletic office (807 W. Glenwood) Wednesday and Thursday from 8 a.m.-4 p.m., and on Friday from 8 a.m.-1 p.m.; at T&T Lewis (903 W. Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd) during regular business hours Wednesday and Thursday; and Tyler Athletics (5201 S. Broadway) during regular business hours Wednesday and Thursday. Presale tickets are $6 for adults, $3 for students and $7 for reserved seats. Gate tickets cost $7.