After bottoming out with an 0-10 record in 2011, Roscoeâs proud football program is once again headed in the right direction.
The Plowboys, who prior to that winless season had gone to the playoffs for 13 consecutive years, could be primed for a breakthrough in 2014 after narrowly missing the postseason in head coach Jake Freemanâs inaugural campaign.
Roscoe went 4-6 in 2013, and was in contention for a berth until the team lost to Roby in its season finale.
It helps that four teams â an increase of one from last season â will be advancing in Roscoeâs new Class 2A district (District 6-2A, Div-ision II). But Freeman also has a team that not only is itching for a return to glory but also is returning a host of players on both sides of the ball who started in â13 â nine on offense, and 10 on the defensive side.
Despite that, Roscoe is picked to finish sixth â or dead last â in 6-2A by Texas Football magazine behind Winters, Menard, Roby, Bronte and Miles. Roby â which defeated Roscoe in last yearâs season finale to deny the Plowboys a playoff berth â is the only other school from a year ago now in Roscoeâs new district.
As a result, Freeman said the Plowboys will more de-termined than ever to prove their worth this season.
âI think (the guys) will play with a chip on their shoulder,â he said.
âI think this district will be very competitive all the way across,â the second-year head coach added. âWe feel we can be competitive with everybody and have a good shot to win it. Weâve got to stay healthy and we have to eliminate mistakes.
âI told the kids we donât put any stock in predict-ions. You donât win a championship in August. But we had a really good spring and when we came into two-a-days, we just picked up with where we left off. I think that weâve changed the mindset of these kids.
âThey expect to win now. Theyâve got a whole different attitude.â
Of the Plowboysâ return-ing starters, four earned all-district honors last season. Quarterback Cutter Davila and defensive end Sebastian Benivamomdez were first team picks and Max Nemir was co-defensive newcomer of the year in District 7-1A, while Rafael Aguayo was a second team pick at receiver and at linebacker. Nemir moves from linebacker to safety this season. Vincent Pantoja will start at middle linebacker this season with Aguayo and Tracer Jones on the outside in Roscoeâs 4-3 setup. Benivamondez and Luis Villa will be the defensive ends and Isaias Aguilar and Anthony Orte-gon will be at the tackles.
Brayden Beal is the other safety, with Kevin Lavalais and Isaiah Gonzales starting at cornerback.
Third-year QB starter Davila (2,296 yards, 26 TDs passing in 2013) will have Aguayo (38 catches), Lavalais, Jones, Beal and Gonzales as his primary receivers along with Nemir and Vincent Pantoja, who will be the running backs.
Offensive line starters are Domonic Pantoja at center, Clayton Chadwick and Aguilar at guard and Chase Cathey and Ortegon at tackle, with Gabriel Alvarez and A.J. Renteria also seeing action. Roscoe begins the season on Aug. 29 at Hawley, and hosts former district rival Hamlin Sept. 5 in its home opener.