CALEXICO — Calexico High School football is under the fourth year of coach John Tyree’s tenure and is gearing up to shake off last year’s hiccups and look forward to a bigger, faster, stronger, and more seasoned unit in 2019.
“This is the fourth year of the program and a culmination of four years of hard work,” said Tyree.
This season, the Bulldogs appear to have better strength, size, and athleticism.
“We also have good depth in most positions,” said Tyree. “We are still in a learning situation as most teams are this time of year. We still have some things we need to fix like putting a puzzle together by putting the right pieces in the right places.”
The quarterback situation in Calexico can be the difference between a productive or foiled season.
“By now we have a couple of quarterbacks that have been with us for a while,” said Tyree. “This that and the other occurred last season and neither one of our guys are returning starters, but we still feel good about our quarterback situation.”
After a fast start and dwindling finish last year, Calexico will need more consistency to keep up with the IVL heavy hitters in 2019.
“We want to win all of our games and we intend to win a lot of games this year,” said Tyree. “The goal is to be well coached. If we’re well coached, we’re gonna’ be an awfully good football team. We have a lot of work to do because we also have a lot of young coaches who are learning on the run.”
According to the coaching staff, the team’s attitude and commitment are much better this year.
“Our defense was good last year and most of them are back,” said Tyree. “We play a tough schedule in a league that is mostly division III, so that helps us. This year is a whole different ball club. What we’re looking at in terms of IVL is landing within the top three and if things go right, we could win it.”
Last year’s running back workhorse, Christopher Gonzalez, who logged 857 yards rushing, returns as senior.
“I feel that we are more ready this season because in three previous years we’ve had a lot of underclassmen, but now that we’re all seniors, we’ve developed more chemistry,” said Gonzalez. “We all communicate together, we know each other by name, and I feel like we’re more prepared, but we still have a lot more work to put in. We all worked out together in the offseason, we play ball at the park together, and we pretty much do everything together. We are hungry this year because we have a lot of seniors and we want our senior year to be one of the best and we want to be one of the better classes to do it here in Calexico.”
Herman Perez also returns as a senior and the middle linebacker and h-back positions for the upcoming season.
“Our short-term goal is to keep getting better every day and a long-term goal would be to have a good run in the playoffs with a good end to the season since it’s our last year,” said Perez. “Here in Calexico we love the fans because they make a big impact; they can be loud and disrupt the other team’s offense and defense to make a big impact for us.”