“It’s huge for us to have so many guys back,” Jensen said. “These guys are out there making calls and reading the game really well. That’s really important once you get to these games because it can be loud enough to where the players have to do that."
A young Mayde Creek team showed signs of improvement last year.
Underclassman stepped up during a turbulent season and showed what they could do last year. Now the Rams have to find a way to turn those improvements into a competitive squad in the ever tough District 19-6A.
“For a lot of these guys they had to learn how to go through adversity and they really did that last year,” said Mayde Creek head coach J Jensen. “They had a lot of success growing up so as young players they had to learn to take things on the chin. But they competed hard every game for four quarters and they grew from the experience. We’re excited about where we are headed with a really good spring and summer.”
The Rams have a lot of returners this year, with talent coming back that will help on the field. Overall there are 25 returning letterman, with over half the teams starters coming back both offensively and defensively.
“It’s huge for us to have so many guys back,” Jensen said. “These guys are out there making calls and reading the game really well. That’s really important once you get to these games because it can be loud enough to where the players have to do that. They’re all calling adjustments on formations and doing the advanced stuff well, which you have to do in this district, or you’ll be exposed. They’ve seen it now and they’re growing and doing it full speed.”
On offense, Cole Jensen will step into the starting quarterback role full time after splitting snaps there in his sophomore year.
Jensen came up from the JV squad halfway through the season and stepped into the starter role very well. Overall Jensen through for 552 yards and three touchdowns, including breaking the Mayde Creek single game record for completions in the Rams game against Tompkins last season.
Cole Jensen will be joined in the backfield by Eric Nelson, who is an explosive back both in the run and pass game. Nelson ran for 201 yards while catching 27 passes for 153 yards, totaling three touchdowns as a sophomore. Trey Williams is set for a breakout junior year after catching 22 passes for 176 yards as a sophomore while Anthony Escoto will lead the Rams offensive line as they expect to have a more competitive unit.
“Cole has really grown as a passer and with his knowledge of the offense this offseason,” Jensen said. “We have an RPO built into every run that we have and he’s really just started to build his knowledge there and read the game. He’s grown as a leader as well and has had a great offseason and we’re excited about what he can do along with Eric back there.”
On defense, Trevin Lucius will lead the unit after a strong junior season. Lucius had 37 tackles last year while leading the team with 10 tackles for loss while also having three sacks. He and Torian Collier will make a strong duo up front while Tate Dietz, Elijah Fuller, David Ramirez and Braelon Green also will be strong contributors to the defense.
The Rams open the year by playing Westside and Waller before opening district with a tough stretch of games, going up against Jordan, Paetow, Katy and Cinco Ranch in their first four matchups. Jensen knows the team will need to hit the ground running this year and is excited with what they’ve shown through the spring and summer.
“This district to me is the best in the state and you have to be ready from the get-go,” Jensen said. “One of the first things we talk about in the fall is where are we currently vs. where we need to be when district starts. We have a lot of guys that have played already so we need to come out and do things right and look crisp. From the first scrimmage to the first two games it’s all about making steady progression because once you get to district there can’t be any mental mistakes. For us it’s vital to come out strong through those first two games and once we get to district.”