OMAHA-NAPLES, Texas — The Paul Pewitt coaching staff will give essential care in order for the team to grow and be successful.
"Our No. 1 goal is to make the playoffs," Brahma head coach Triston Abron said. "We also want to win the district. Those are our primary goals, and we will take it one game at a time to make sure that we are progressing the way we should.
"Hopefully we can hit our stride toward the latter part of the season and continue our success through the post season. My expectations are the same as our goals. I have a lot of guys coming back, and we can't say that we are young anymore. I think if we stay focused, we will have the opportunity to be successful."
Paul Pewitt's team motto is bamboo. Each day after summer workouts, Coach Abron read his team a chapter out of the book, "Chop Wood Carry Water". Chapter 20 of the book is titled "Bamboo".
"The book includes ways to overcome adversity. The "Bamboo" chapter is about the process of the bamboo tree and what all goes on in the process of its maturation. We have to cut the growing process a little short to use this as our motto. We (the coaching staff) told the kids, 'We are watering you, nurturing you, and putting you through all kinds of hard work because we need you to be prepared when its time for you to flourish and grow. You are going to grow in a hurry'.
"They understood that we have been nurturing them since we stepped off the field with Newton last season. It's a way for them to always maintain or refocus on the work that they have done to know that we are going to be relentless the entire season."Gallery: Texarkana Gazette's 2019 Football Edition
The Brahmas return with the Slot-T offense.
"We feel like we have great size up front that will give us the push that we need," Abron said. "We have several running backs that we feel like can get us 3-4 yards per snap. The Slot-T is a traditional Pewitt offense."
Sophomore Deiontray Hill, senior La-Jathan Allen, junior Kadrien Johnson, junior DJ Turner, and senior Keiuntray Hawkins will each contribute in the backfield.
Hill is a fullback, Allen is a scatback, Johnson and Turner are tailbacks, and Hawkins is an H-back.
Senior Cross Holder returns as the starting quarterback. Paul Pewitt is mainly a running team but will throw the ball some.
"Cross does a great job of calling the offense and getting things done that we need," Abron said. "He is picking up where he left off and is doing awesome. We are expecting great things from him this season."
Hill, Allen, Johnson, Turner, and Hawkins will be the primary receivers for Holder. Colby Frost starts at split end, blocks, and has good hands.
"We are blessed with some size on our line," Abron said. "Duke Fitts, our center, is a senior and is one of the hardest working kids that I've had."
At right guard will be junior David Williams, and next to him will be Demarcus Hill at right tackle. The battle at tight end is between Tanor Mines and Rane McCollum.
Returning starter, junior Rhys Kelley, is solid at left guard. Junior Jett Morris and Ryan Caperton are battling for the left tackle spot.
"Whichever player takes the starting position, the competition will make the other player better," Abron said. "If I can switch them out each week, then it would be great. I want them competing that much and getting better."
Paul Pewitt runs a 3-4 defense.
Kelley and Allen will start on defense, and teammate Mines starts at inside linebacker. Johnson will start at cornerback, and Hill will contribute on defense.
Joey Green is back on the Brahmas' team after moving back from Mount Pleasant, Texas, and will start at outside linebacker.
Two returning starters at cornerback are Dillon Coffey, who is also the starting punter, and Demarcus Johnson.
"Demarcus is not real tall, but he is feisty," Abron said. "He does a good job of just getting in the way of receivers and can run like the wind."
Turner returns as a safety and was named to the All-District first team a year ago.
Frost will play at inside linebacker as well as junior Kolby Kelley.
"We have three really good inside linebackers," Abron said. "We will have constant rotation so that we can stay as fresh as possible. I think Joey (Green) will do a great job for us. I have a couple of other players who will have a chance to be part of the rotation."
Holder and Dalton Vissering are the two kickers for the Brahmas. Vissering is a backup quarterback and backup safety and handles the holding duties.
GROWING FROM SEED TO MATURITY
"We are still in the maturing phase," Abron said. "I told the kids that the start of two-a-days was the time that we poked our face through the solid. We will reach our maturation until December 19 in Arlington.
"Our mind set is to keep growing, to stay strong, and to keep being nurtured so that we can do what we need to do to be successful."
Aug. 30, New Boston
Sept. 6, at Hooks
Sept. 13, Redwater
Sept. 20, x-Waskom
Sept. 27, x-at Ore City
Oct. 11, x-at New Diana
Oct. 18, DeKalb
Oct. 25, x-at Elysian Fields
Nov. 1, x-Daingerfield
Nov. 8, x-at Queen City
x-Denotes 11-3A game
All kickoffs at 7:30 p.m.
— SCHOOL: Paul Pewitt
— 2018 RECORD: 8-3
— HEAD COACH: Triston Abron
— YEARS AT SCHOOL: 2nd
— COACHING STAFF: Reggie Kumrow, off. coordinator; Brent Milby, def. coordinator; Cedric Dorsey; Travis Moore; Michael Haydon; Grant Cason; Nick York.
— LETTERMEN LOST/BACK: 5/17
— STARTERS BACK: 9 offense, 8 defense
— PLAYERS TO WATCH: FB/ATH Deiontray Hill, HB/DL Keiuntray Hawkins, QB/K Cross Holder, TB Kadrien Johnson, C Duke Fitts, G David Willliams, T Demarcus Hill, G Rhys Kelley, S DJ Turner, ILB Colby Frost, ILB/TE Tanor Mines.
— TOP NEWCOMERS: OLB Joey Green, OLB Eric Green.