Ruben on the Road: Former teammates now playing across the Panhandle

Published: Oct. 30, 2023 at 10:57 AM CDT
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AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - Ruben makes a few stops in the Panhandle to meet up with former Little Longhorn teammates who now play across the Panhandle.

Dimmitt High School coach Jose Gonzalez says he started off coaching in Hereford for the Little Herd little team. He moved to Amarillo and started coaching there at Caprock building a good program for the Little Longhorns there.

“And yes, all those kids that are over there, you know, hey, we used to work them hard and now they’re doing their own things. You know, hopefully they go to the next level because all the kids, when they were little, they’re great now,” said Gonzalez.

Andrew Flores, senior at Friona High School, says it’s cool to see how everyone has grown and changed and how they’re using the experience that they got from playing the Little Longhorns.

“And they helped me feel part of a team even before I was part of a team. It helped me gain the knowledge and have knowledge to work with others and have teammates that I know were there for me,” said Flores.

Jordi Hernandez, West Plains High School senior, says he thinks it’s an amazing experience.

“Especially like growing up with those type of kids, playing with them now and playing against them, it’s a really cool experience and it’s awesome,” said Hernandez.

The coaches were really strict on them, and Hernandez says they helped the players become the men they are today.

Darien Lewis, Palo Duro High School sophomore, says he thinks it really helped him know the game more than anything. When he steps on the field, he says he’s got a high IQ to more people on the field.

“I feel like we all knew it would happen one day because when we’re little as a team, always went to the field, worked out, started before everybody else, you know, just trusted the process to here,” said Lewis. “But we all went to different high schools.”

Kyron Wooten, West Plains High School senior, says it was good because he had to meet a lot of new people and make new friends. He played baseball growing up, so football was a little new. He just want straight into tackle and it taught him a lot.

“It really taught me everything I know to be honest. Over the years, Coach Jose, he helped me a lot and just learn how to be a good football player and a good person,” said Wooten.

Braylon Tarver, senior at Wellington High School, says there’s a lot of offenses.

“It helps your IQ out remembering plays because we do run a lot of offenses here at Wellington also, and like you know, it’s pretty similar to TTYFL was. It’s helped me with my IQ and stuff like that,” said Braylon.

Bryant Tarver, Wellington High School senior, says people don’t really think about it as a kid, but at the end, like, the offense they ran at Caprock is the offense they run in high school.

“So it’s kind of cool looking at all that kind of stuff, and it was amazing playing for them, always fun,” said Bryant.