AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - Dodge DeLozier entered his senior season ready to prove himself.
“Senior year is going to be a huge thing for me,” said DeLozier in the preseason. “Throw for a lot of yards, run for a lot of yards, and win a lot of football games.”
But the proud Hereford quarterback saw his season come to a close far sooner than expected.
"I dropped back to pass, broke a tackle, scrambled, ran for a decent amount, probably 20 yards, tried to break another tackle and just felt an excruciating amount of pain in my knee," described DeLozier.
The game was a scrimmage against Lubbock High. DeLozier sat out a week, but started feeling better, and got back on the field. But a weird step at practice had the trainer calling for an MRI.
“So we went and got an MRI, and the results came back that I had a torn medial meniscus, torn lateral meniscus and a torn ACL,” said DeLozier.
With a torn up knee that requires surgery, that meant his season was over- And not just for football. Basketball and track were off the table, too. A tough break for a senior, but possibly hardest on his coach and father- Don.
"We have people that are able-bodied and ready to step in and have their opportunity and we realize that and as a coach, I've got to be able to present that and I am. But, it’s still dad every once in a while, and that makes it hard," expressed Coach.
Dodge has handled the news surprisingly well. He tells his family and friends that moving forward is the only option.
"You got to be like a shark. If sharks stop in the water, they sink they drown. We got to keep moving forward, explained DeLozier.
He reflects on his time representing Hereford on the football field as an honor- one that only the tight-knit community can understand. He's been a part of the tradition since he was a kid.
"On Friday nights, this is the place to be," expressed DeLozier.
However, his role with the team is not done yet.
“It’s a changing role, and to borrow a quote from a friend of ours, “We've had a change in mission’, and he's doing a good job of handling that,” said Coach. “Dodge is still a captain of this football team, and he takes that role very seriously.”
And neither is Hereford’s season.
“This is a group of kids that have played together for a long time. They have a huge belief in each other, and Dodge's belief in them hasn't changed,” explained Coach.
Dodge will remain on the sideline-- a leader, teammate, and friend. He maintains the utmost confidence in his team and his replacement.
“We're still in this. We have playoffs to expect, we have a deep run to expect, because Britt is definitely able to take this team and push it to another level,” said DeLozier.
Britt Cave is taking DeLozier’s place as the starting quarterback, with Dodge there to provide his guidance. Hereford begins district play this coming weekend at home against Pampa.