Preparing for their upcoming season, the Bastrop High School football team has practiced for the hotter half of the summer to face their first opponent of the season, the Rangers of Bryan-Rudder High School.
With the Bears’ summer spent working out, playing football and building as a team, many teammates are ready to face the new season. “We have all got bigger, faster, and stronger so we are going to go out and play with more intensity,” said junior quarterback Seth Mouser. Sacrificing countless hours for this first game, they focused on weightlifting, agility, speed, and football install. “I spent my whole summer working to get ready for this season,” said senior cornerback Dwayne Jackson. “I’m ready to put on a show.”
Athletic director and head football coach Todd Patmon has noticed the hard work his team has been putting in and he commends it. “Guys are giving up a lot of their time and giving up their bodies to perform at a high level for this sport,” said Patmon.
The Bears are ready to prove that they have what it takes this season after a disappointing loss to the Bryan Rudder football team last season. “I have a lot of respect for Rudder,” said senior quarterback Luke Williams. “They are a very talented team that beat us pretty badly last season. To many of the players, the first game was personal after last season’s showing, which is making it that much more meaningful. “Last year it wasn’t a very close game so we have something to prove this year,” said Mouser. “We have a chip on our shoulder.”
Patmon believes he and his team are coming for vengeance this season after the disappointing 3-7 record last year. “I think being here as long as I have, every game is personal because I love this place, I love our kids and I love our community,” said Patmon.
Many changes have occurred this season impacting the outcome of the upcoming season, including a new offensive coordinator. After struggling in offense last season the Bears decided to adopt an entirely different playbook. “He has really opened the field up for me,” said Mouser, claiming this new offensive coordinator has helped him reach another level. “He’s helped me see things that I couldn’t see before.”
Adjustments like these could be very difficult for veteran athletes and coaches in the program, but head coach Todd Patmon believes that he and his coaching staff are doing what needs to be done in order for their players to succeed. “The new system is going to be about our kids,” Patmon said. “It’s always going to be about looking to see how it fits our kids, how can our kids excel in it, and then how can we stretch our kids.
Changes in the playbook are not the only concern leading up to future games. “When we decide to rally up as a family we are able to perform and do great things, but our biggest weakness is whenever we stop working together and start blaming each other,” said senior quarterback Luke Williams. The team chemistry seems to be a general concern amongst the team.
“Once we all pull together we can dominate,” said senior left tackle Jaden Williams. Patmon believes that this is an obstacle that many of his players are going to continue to face throughout life, and addressing it early in the season helps mature young athletes. “There’s going to be some ups and downs,” he says. “I think the longer the small units are together and the longer the small units learn to function together, then the better the bigger units will function.”
“I’m ready to go out there and do what I do. I have faith in this team that we can actually get done what we need to get done to win this game,” said senior left tackle Jaden Williams.
Come support your Bastrop Bears at Memorial Stadium this Friday at 7:30 p.m as they take on the Manor Mustangs. GO BEARS!