Tony goes one-on-one with the Brazosport Exporters’ Head Football Coach, Mike Ferrell.
Tony: 2nd year at Brazosport after coming over from North Forest. Tell us a little bit about the move over from North Forest.
Mike Ferrell: Leaving North Forest was a difficult decision. I knew that we had a chance to continue to be a dominant program, as they are. Coach Terrell’s done a great job. He was my defensive coordinator. Anytime you take a shot, leave a very successful program to come to a program that had not had the success that I was accustomed to, there is a tendency to have a little fear. I got here and jumped right in and realized that we had similar type athletes that we had at North Forest and that we had a chance to be successful. The biggest thing we had to do immediately was change the way we did things, change the culture, change the sense of entitlement and get our young men to understand… and to be honest campus-wide philosophy, trying to earn things. Last year we had a tremendous season, advanced to the 2nd round of the playoffs. Brazosport had not won a playoff game since 2000. A tremendous sense of accomplish in that. Every one of our sports made the playoffs last year. Not only was it an outstanding football season, but it caught fire throughout our entire athletics program. All of our kids are really buying into what we are trying to do – build a program where we are a championship program in every sport. A lot of sense of accomplishment.
Tony: You’ve been practicing for four days, as well as strength and conditioning over the summer. Do you like what you’ve seen so far?
Mike Ferrell: We had great turn out in summer strength and conditioning, summer seven on seven, really pleased with how we participated in seven on seven. We didn’t have the same success we had the summer before but we got better each week and that is what I was looking for. We had about one hundred and forty kids a day show up for summer strength and conditioning – what a tremendous number. Coming into the last four days, I couldn’t be more pleased with where we are. Defensively it seems like our team understands a little bit more what we are trying to do defensively. They understand the sense of “do their job and the rest will fall into place”. Offensively although we are young at the skill positions, we have tremendous talent there. That’s what excites me. Where we graduated kids, we have tremendous talent replacing that. They just need experience under the lights and getting more and more reps and I think success will follow.
Tony: Give me a few kids that I don’t know right now, that I will know before the year is over.
Mike Ferrell: Nyquon Watkins is going to have a great year. He’s a tremendous athlete. He competed in the state track meet. He worked hard this summer. He really put in the work. I think he’s going to have a tremendous season both on offense and defense.
We have a young man named Emeka O’Neal at defensive line who worked his tail off. He didn’t miss a day this summer. He got tremendously stronger in the weight room. I think he’s going to have a break-out year for us.
Daraell Preston is a young man, the New Comer of the Year for lower Brazoria County in district 12-4A last year as a sophomore. I think he’s going to have a great year as a wide receiver and he’ll play a lot of defense too.
We have another you man, CJ Calhoun, a sophomore defensive lineman. He could have a great year. A lot of the same makeup as Dareall. He’s about 6’2” 210 pounds and he runs. I think he’s going to help us have a great defensive line.
A lot of young talent here. Whoever our quarterback is, they are going to have a good year too because they have some good weapons to throw to and handoff too.