Are You Ready for Some Football Katy?

Todd McVey, Chad Simmons, Lance Carter, Jimmy Hamon, Charlie Stevens, B.J. Gotte, Debbie Decker, Gary Joseph, Pat Dowling, Mike Rabe, Kyle Green, Don Clayton and Ron Counter.

COVER STORY | By Henry Dibrell
Photos courtesy of Katy ISD –

Some people love the holiday season.  Yes, the holidays are alright.  Others love summer or spring. I can appreciate that, but to me, the absolute best time of the year is football season. I love high school football!  It is the most exciting football on the planet, and the Katy football tradition is huge in our community.

To help get ready for my favorite time of year, I had an opportunity to interview each of our high school football coaches and ask them about the upcoming season.  What did they have to say?  That they are ready for some football – of course!

 

absolutely! Katy:  What are your expectations for the upcoming season?

Coach McVey: Our expectations are to take it one game at a time.

AK:  What is the greatest challenge you face this season?

CMV: Our greatest challenge will be staying healthy, as we have a lack of depth, and staying focused each week.

AK:  What do you enjoy the most about being a high school football coach?

CMV: What I enjoy most about high school coaching is the lifelong relationships you build with the athletes and the coaches. Helping the athletes see that they are so much more then they think they are, and when they finally see it in themselves, and that light goes off in their heads – this is my why.

AK: What three individuals have influenced you most in your career?

CMV: My influences are my high school coach John Ferrara.  He coached Tommy Kramer of San Antonio Lee High School and played for the NFL Vikings in the State Championship game in 1971. He instilled in me a work ethic like no other. He was a guy who you did not like early on, then you respected him and then, you loved him because he brought out the best in you. My former boss Head Coach Rusty Dowling, the most organized man I had ever met. He was always prepared for meetings, practice, offseason, summer, etc. Ron Poe, the former Head Coach in McKinney, was a relationship builder and could really reach kids who sometimes did not want to be reached.

absolutely! Katy: What are your expectations for the upcoming season?

Coach Hamon: I expect our team to compete in every football game that we play this season. I just hope that we can show up and prove it to everyone. I feel like with five offensive starters and seven defensive starters coming back, we have enough experience to be successful in 19-6A.

AK: What is the greatest challenge you face this season?

CH: Since I am new to Seven Lakes High School, I feel like our biggest challenge will be establishing our new identity as a football program.

AK: What do you enjoy the most about being a high school football coach?

CH: I enjoy making a difference in a player’s life. There are so many life lessons to learn through the game of football that go far beyond the score on the scoreboard. As a football coach, we cannot forget that.

AK: What three individuals have influenced you most in your career?

CH: Steve Cloud, my first high school football coach at Sam Rayburn High School.  Coach Cloud took the time to talk to my mother about the importance of athletics. If he had not done that, I may not be in the position I am in today. Chris Bussey, the former Campus Athletic Coordinator and Head Football Coach at Sam Rayburn High School, who really showed that it only takes a little more to go first class. Brett Sniffin, Campus Athletic Coordinator and Head Football Coach at Ridge Point High School, who afforded me many duties, tasks and responsibilities that I needed in order to be prepared for this position.

absolutely! Katy: What are your expectations for the upcoming season?

Coach Rabe:  We expect to be very competitive this season. Our football program has grown over the last several seasons, and we expect to see a good product this year.

AK: What is the greatest challenge you face this season?

CR: To continue to build on the momentum created by last year’s football team.

AK: What do you enjoy the most about being a high school football coach?

CR: I enjoy the relationships you are able to develop with the staff members and players each year.

AK: What three individuals have influenced you most in your career?

CR: James Rabe, my father, who was a long-time educator and administrator and took me to every Cuero football game as a child. Mickey Finley, my high school football coach, who I both played for and worked for, and Bill Littleton, my former high school football coach, who instilled the framework of character into all of his players.

absolutely! Katy: What are your expectations for the upcoming season?

Coach Clayton: We have a great group of kids led by a strong senior class. This group has worked hard to make good things happen. With the toughness of the schedule, we have a chance to develop into a very competitive team if we step up to the weekly challenges.

AK: What is the greatest challenge you face this season?

CC: The inexperience on the defensive side of the ball, as we are playing our toughest non-district schedule in school history, coupled with the strongest our district has ever been, will be a big-time challenge. We will need to grow up in the experience category in a hurry to be able to compete at this level.

AK: What do you enjoy the most about being a high school football coach?

CC: Working with kids and helping them to develop into the quality people who will be the leaders of the next generation. Watching kids grow and develop is exciting and very rewarding.

AK: What three people have affected you the most in your career, and what did they teach you?

CC: My junior high school coach, George Eisenmann, taught me that football is fun and that competing is a great thing to do. My high school coach, Neal Morgan, taught me that anything worth having is worth working for. My college coaches, Fred Akers and Bob Warmack, taught me that you have to have a plan, and you need to be able to stick to it. All three instilled in me the desire to coach by the way they treated me and coached me.

absolutely! Katy: What are your expectations for the upcoming season?

Coach Joseph: My expectations are to get better each and every game, win District and have a chance to compete for the State Championship.

AK: What is the greatest challenge you face this season?

CJ: Inexperience, combined with a very demanding non-district schedule.

AK: What do you enjoy the most about being a high school football coach?

CJ: The interaction with the kids and the coaches.

AK: What three people have affected you the most in your career?

CJ: Eddie Joseph, Lynn Etheredge and Mike Johnston.  Mike is the former coach of Katy High School and the creator of the Katy System, which has produced eight State Championships.

absolutely! Katy: What are your expectations for the season?

Coach Simmons:  While we fully understand the high quality of coaching and the caliber of players in our district, we expect to also compete at a high level and to contend for a play-off spot. We are in the process of learning to play at a high level consistently, and we are looking to improve incrementally each week. We have a very tough non-district schedule as well and hope to establish a physical identity and build on the strength of the brotherhood within our team, while gaining confidence and momentum going into our district schedule.

AK: What is the greatest challenge you face this season?

CS: The greatest challenge is for everyone involved to fully buy in, learn and implement new systems on both sides of the ball –  to learn that improving and learning to win is a slow process and that we have to be patient in that regard.

AK: What do you enjoy the most about being a high school football coach?

CS: I still enjoy most building strong bonds with coaches and kids, the daily hands-on of helping kids to reach their maximum potential and the unity that comes through sharing the daily grind. I truly believe that junior high and high school coaches are in a position to have a tremendous positive impact on guiding our young people in becoming great husbands, wives, mothers and fathers. It is a job that matters well beyond X’s and O’s and winning games and can produce ripples that affect generations.

AK: Who has influenced you the most in your career?

CS: There were several coaches going through junior high and high school that influenced me and made me want to become a coach: Delbert Spell, Jack Lynch, Roy Kokemoor, Ben Hurt and Gary Tiner.  These great men showed that they cared about you and then proceeded to work your tail off. I still stay in touch with all of them today, except for Coach Hurt, who passed away this year.  I let them know the positive influence they had on me. My grandad, Dudley Metreyeon, was also a strong early influence on how important and unifying athletics could be for a community.  He and a buddy didn’t miss one Nederland High School football game for 42 years, and I was at many of them with him as a boy. The baseball field in Nederland is named after my grandad and Pete Delahoussaye.

absolutely! Katy: What are your expectations for the upcoming season?

Coach Gotte: Being that this is our first year of Varsity football, our expectation is to continually improve each and every week. We are going to compete to win in everything that we do and understand that in order to create a culture of success, improvement is a must every day.

AK: What is the greatest challenge you face this season?

CG: Experience and leadership. Without a senior class, or juniors with varsity experience, our greatest challenge will be to develop these vital tools week to week.

AK: What do you enjoy the most about being a high school football coach?

CG: Watching kids overcome obstacles and seeing them experience success.

AK: Who have been your career role models? 

CG: Mike Johnston, Gary Joseph and Chris Massey. All three of those men helped teach me the value of humility, a solid work ethic and organization.

absolutely! Katy: What are your expectations for the upcoming season?

Coach Counter: We expect to make the playoffs. This is the second year of a new coaching staff, and the players are stronger and understand the offense and defense systems better.

AK: What is the greatest challenge you face this season?

CC: To be able to beat an opponent in district that others don’t expect.

AK: What do you enjoy the most about being a high school football coach?

CC: The relationships you have with the players and coaches.

AK: What experience and individuals made a lasting impression on your career?

CC: Being a high school quarterback, walking on at Oklahoma University as a college player. All of the coaches and players that I have worked with through the years have had an impact on my coaching.


Wow!  It’s going to be a great football season!
See y’all at the stadium.