2011 SPORTS PREVIEW: Bears bring more athleticism to the table for 2011 season
Members of the Bear defense surround a would-be Bandera ball carrier during their scrimmage Aug. 13.
LA VERNIA -- A record of 6-5 may not sound like success to some, but for the La Vernia Bear football team, that is exactly what it was. The Bears had a tough 2010 season, as they played a number of state-ranked teams. They came close on several of those losses, but never stopped fighting. The Bears finished the regular season with a big win, and earned a place in the playoffs.
“Last year’s team played hard and earned everything they ever got,” said Head Football Coach Bo Robinson, “but I expect even more from this team.”
Robinson, now in his sixth season at La Vernia, believes his team has a great level of talent this year, and is excited to see how they progress. The team will face another difficult schedule, but Robinson believes it will make his team better in the long run.
“I’ve said it before ... football is a marathon -- not a sprint,” Robinson said during a morning practice in Bear Stadium. “We have to build momentum as the season moves along. If I’m gonna lose, I’d rather lose in the early games and get better.”
When the Bears take the field to start the season, fans won’t see any major changes from last year, other than the faces. Robinson said he and his coaching staff may make some minor changes here and there, but it won’t be much.
“It’s our job to put the kids in the best position to be successful,” Robinson said, “but for the most part, we are going to go out and do what we’ve always done.”
Robinson said he expects a big year from several athletes, including quarterback Jose Sahagun, Kenny Moehrig, Aaron Grubb, and others. The Bears return a total of 16 lettermen, including five offensive starters and six starters on defense.
The Bears will continue play in the tough District 28-3A, and La Vernia will have to face the teams from Cuero, Sam Houston, Gonzales, Pleasanton, Yoakum, and Poteet. Cuero has been picked to win the district again this year, but no one is going to roll over for the Gobblers -- or anyone else.
“It’s a competitive district, but I’m not worried about it at this point,” Robinson said. “We have a lot of work to do before we get to our district games.”
As for goals, Robinson likes to keep things simple, and said “winning” is always on the list. Still, he tries to take things one game at a time, and believes in focusing on the task at hand.
“I’d like to win the district championship, make the playoffs, and play until December,” he said. “That’s my goal. I hope it’s the kids’ goal, too.
“The kids have to feel that way inside, though,” Robinson added. “I can’t want it enough for them. But I can promise you, if they ever get a real taste of that success, they will want more of it.”
The Bears’ greatest strength this season will be in their depth and numbers. Robinson said he has a lot of kids who can play, and he hopes to keep fresh bodies in the game. As for their weakness, Robinson said that will be in finding players to fill some key roles.
“We will have a lot of new faces on the field, but I’m confident,” Robinson said. “We have a real chance to be pretty good.”