MOODY, Texas — After his first full offseason with the team, Moody Head Football Coach Lonnie Judd believes the Bearcats are playing like a "new team" and could take a major step forward in 2021.
The Bearcats struggled through Judd's first season in 2020, winning just one game and failing to tally a single victory in district play. Judd attributed some of those struggles to an offseason limited by the COVID-19 pandemic.
This year, he was able to bring his team through a full set of summer workouts. He says the team is bigger and stronger than they were a year ago.
The biggest leap could come on the offensive end, where the Bearcats return six starters.
"We've got a really good quarterback with a lot of experience coming back" Judd said. "He's been starting since he was a freshman, Ryder Hohhertz. And, he's got a good receiving core. We've got some key offensive lineman back. So, offensively, we've got a really good core nucleus to work with."
Maybe more importantly, summer workouts provided a space for players and coaches to build key relationships heading into a new year. Players say, in 2020, they did not spend much time together outside of school. That has changed in 2021.
"We all talk outside of school," senior Hunter Mach said. "The whole football team is together after school. We all know each other. We're all family. We're all friends. And I think being close makes the team way better than it was last year."
This year, Moody is aiming for a trip to the playoffs. However, they enter the year picked to finish last in District 12-2A I.
Moody opens the season against Hamilton.