Tahoka football built from scratch under new coach Cody Bounds
The Tahoka football team won a district championship and added a playoff win to kick off 2019.
Since then, the Bulldogs have fallen on hard times. Going winless in the district play the past two years — and winless the entire 2021 season. When Cody Bounds was interviewed to be the new head coach, he asked what the school wanted from its football program.
The short answer? A complete overhaul.
“We’re trying to change a culture,” Bounds said. “…I think a lot of our kids think that just because school is there doesn’t mean we don’t have sports. So little. For most people, it’s the obvious stuff. , but they’re not so for us. We’re having to fight some of those fights right now.”
When Bounds first took Tahoka’s position, he expected 10 starters to return on each side of the ball, an ideal starting position for any team, regardless of the previous year. Those numbers have gone down a bit between players transferring to other schools and some choosing not to play football this year.
“We made a decision, a conscious decision to set our priorities high, to set our standards high, and the majority of kids have met that head-on and enjoyed it,” Bounds said. “But some kids just say, hey, you know what, I’d rather be doing something else.
“And that’s okay. Understand there’s no hard feelings. We love these kids. They’re welcome if they change their minds, if they decide they want to work hard. But right now, we’re heading in one direction and we’re laying that foundation and we feel like we’re doing what it takes to be successful.”
Bounds said he respects the kids who choose not to play, but needs to stay focused on those left behind, especially the seniors who have returned for one last time with the Bulldogs.
“I told my seniors that we’re going to push hard for them and we’re going to win as many games as we can and we’re going to do everything we can to honor them and do them good,” Bounds said.
Among those returning seniors are the lineman trio of Kaidance Rodriguez, Jon Dylan Rodriguez and Chris Arrington. The trio is the Bulldogs’ strongest positional group on both sides of the ball, which Bounds hopes will help the team in the long run.
Beyond that, there are no fixed positions.
Bounds said the team is moving some players to other positions this year. Sophomore Brogan Stone, who got a run as a rookie, is competing with senior Dominic Varela for the starting quarterback spot.
Bounds said Stone is the prototype quarterback while Varela’s athleticism will allow him to be used in a variety of positions no matter how the QB battle plays out.
Despite losing a few comebacks, Tahoka has a new addition to the team Bounds is raised on in Casen Resendez.
“He really showed us some things,” Bounds said of Resendez, “and we’ve got a bunch of sophomores and a ton of freshmen, a couple of juniors mixed in as well. We’ve got a good mix children and we are excited to know where we are going.
“I tell the kids, we don’t worry about who’s not there. We worry about who’s there and those who are there are working hard.”
The head coach —Cody Bounds
Records 2021 — 0-10 overall, 0-5 in District 2-2A Division I
Basic offense — Multiple Shotgun
basic defense – Odd
Return letters — 15
Returning off./def. entries — 8/8
Best Feedback —Kaidance Rodriguez, Sr., OL/DL; Jon Dylan Rodriguez, father, OL/DL; Chris Arrington, Sr., OL/DL; Morgan Stone, So., QB; Dominic Varela, father, ATH
* – denotes District 2-2A Division I game
August 26 — at Plains, 7 p.m.
Sept. 2 – vs. Sudan, 7 p.m.
September 9 – at Seagraves, 7 p.m.
Sept. 16 – vs. Crosbyton, 7 p.m.
September 23 – at Ropes, 7 p.m.
Oct. 7 — vs. New Deal*, 7 p.m.
Oct. 14 — vs. Post*, 7 p.m.
October 21 — at Floydada*, 7 p.m.
Oct. 28 – vs. Olton*, 7 p.m.
November 4 — at sunset*, 7 p.m.