Doak Walker equipment check-out is next step toward season
For cousins Cutter Barnes, Dusty Taylor and Trent Vernon, broncos, colts and cowboys aren’t football teams.
They’re every day sights.
Barnes, Taylor and Vernon are rodeo cowboys, and Vernon and Barnes grew up on ranches.
On Wednesday, the trio, along with more than 100 other players, were divvied up among 10 teams for Craig Parks and Recreation’s Doak Walker Football league.
Equipment was handed out to players ranging in age from 7 to 12 years old at Craig City Hall, one week before practices begin.
And the trio hopes it will take the field together.
“I hope we’re all on the same team,” Barnes said. “Just because we’re cousins.”
“I hope we’re on the same team so I can run them both over,” Vernon said.
As a result of growing up on a ranch and participating in rodeos, Vernon’s football skills have improved.
“It just makes me tougher,” he said.
Josh Teeter, 8, is ready for the season to start for one reason.
“I’m ready to go after some players,” he said.
Although he doesn’t have a position yet, Teeter said he wants to be a running back.
“Because I like to run,” he said.
One of the men in charge of making sure his players will run is coach Phil Hoth.
Now in his third year, Hoth said he started coaching because his son, Cole, picked up the game.
He said being a coach offers him a chance to help players as they learn the game.
“Just to be able to interact with youth and set them on the right path,” he said. “I try to stress fair play, and how to be a good winner or loser, while learning the game of football.”
Justin Gallegos has coached Doak Walker Football for 10 years on top of coaching basketball at the high school level.
He said he enjoys being a coach at the youth level for several reasons.
“When the kids are this young, and they’re just starting to learn the game, it’s the purest of all fun,” he said. “There are no politics, everyone gets to play and they’re all out here for the love of the game.”
His lessons were not unlike Hoth’s.
“Whether we win or not, we’re going to be the classiest team on the field,” he said. “Football, and most sports, teaches them valuable life lessons. Like if you start something, finish it or keep trying. Don’t give up.”
Shane Hadley will assist Gallegos as Ravens coach.
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