By Dave Wagner: CNJ sports writer
Texas high school football teams kick off preseason practice on Monday, and for second-year Farwell coach Mark Anglin it couldn’t come soon enough.
“I’ve been ready to start football since June,” Anglin said. “It’s what I love doing.”
The Steers went 5-5 last season, including 1-3 in District 4-1A. The district has picked up a sixth member this season in Claude, a team Farwell defeated in non-district play last year.
Anglin expects a turnout in the low 40s, adding his team has some holes to fill with just two starters returning on offense and four on defense.
He said offense is more of a concern, since several players gained playing experience last season on defense.
“We’re going to have to rely on our young kids,” he said. “But it’s such a good group of kids and they work so hard, I think we’ll be OK.”
Farwell has scrimmages at Morton on Aug. 18 and at home against Vega and Texico on Oct. 24 before opening the season at Plains on Aug. 31.
Bovina — The Mustangs are coming off back-to-back Class 1A playoff appearances, both ending in first-round losses to Quanah.
Anglin, for one, thinks Bovina will be a team to be reckoned with in District 4-1A.
“The team to beat this year is Bovina,” he said. “They were ranked 23rd in the state (in 1A).”
Second-year coach Hector Guevara admits expectations are high, but said it wouldn’t take much for the Mustangs to struggle.
“Every year is a challenge at a 1A school,” said Guevara, who anticipates 35-40 for Monday’s opening practices. “If you lose a kid here and there, it could change the season.”
Bovina finished 7-4 in 2006, including 3-1 in the district to finish behind Nazareth.
“It’s going to be a tough district again,” Guevara said. “It’s up for grabs.”
Muleshoe — Coach David Wood hopes to lead the Mules to their ninth playoff berth in the last 10 seasons, building around 10 returning lettermen.
Muleshoe went 9-3 last year and made the Class 2A playoffs as the District 2-2A runnerup to Friona at 4-1. Wood said he thinks Friona and Bushland will probably be contenders for the district title.
“We’re very similar to last year,” Wood said. “We’ll be a little bigger in the line, so we’ll probably run the ball a little more.”
The Mules have scrimmages with Post at home and at Brownfield before opening the season at home against Childress on Aug. 31.