LITTLE RIVER-ACADEMY, Texas — The Academy Bumblebees are hungry for more after a historic playoff run in 2021 and enter the season with high expectations. Academy enters the year ranked No. 13 in Conference 3A-I.
For the last two years, Academy has been an incredibly young team, especially in the trenches. This year, the sophomores and freshmen who started in 2020 are now juniors and seniors, ready to lead the Bees on the front lines.
"A lot of these kids are back," third-year head coach Chris Lancaster said. "So, we've got 11 seniors right now in our camp and a lot of juniors and a plethora of sophomores and freshmen. So, we're still young, but we're excited for where the future is headed."
The Bumblebees will rely on one of the top quarterback-wide receiver duos in the state as junior Kasey Mraz looks to connect with senior Scout Brazeal yet again. The pair combined for 17 touchdown passes in 2021.
"They bring a lot," third-year head coach Chris Lancaster said. "Number one, just the timing of everything and the comfortability of knowing each other, where each other is gonna be and where the delivery of the ball is. And then, Kasey's leadership skills keep getting better and better. So, I just cant say enough about it."
Academy will likely feel some growing pains after the key departures of long-time starters Darion Franklin, John Tomasek and Blake Bundy. However, the Bees do bring back quite a few playmakers in the middle of their defense.
Academy is projected to finish third in the difficult District 11-3A I, behind reigning state champions Lorena and Franklin.
2022 FOOTBALL SCHEDULE:
8/26 vs Rogers 7:30
9/2 vs Lago Vista 7:30
9/9 at Hillsboro 7:30
9/16 at Salado 7:30
9/23 at Troy* 7:30
9/30 vs Lorena* 7:30
10/7 at Cameron Yoe* 7:30
10/21 vs McGregor* 7:30
10/28 at Rockdale* 7:30
11/4 vs Franklin* 7:30
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