Rumor has it that some of the best learning and growing takes place in the face of adversity. Such was the case for the 2016 Sam Houston Texans. Defeat after stunning defeat, the squad took the field each week and didn’t leave until every ounce of effort had been expended. While concluding with a losing record, the challenging season afforded many underclassmen the opportunity to suit up and get varsity experience.
While much of the young team will be returning, the chemistry of the squad will be much different in 2017 without a few key individuals. Damarcus Allen will be graduating in May and headed to East Texas Baptist University. Allen was an incredibly versatile asset for the Texans with the ability to play every skilled position offensively. He spent time receiving, running, and even backing up the quarterback when needed. Junior Kabela will be leaving the Texans to attend Oklahoma Panhandle State University. Kabela provided extensive support from the secondary. Trevon Mason will be joining the TVCC Cardinals. Mason remained a force on the defensive line, leading the district in sacks. The team will also be losing kicker Juan Vargas to Navarro College. Vargas had a huge impact kicking on all special teams.
As the seniors move on to play at the next level, expectations are high for the Texans in 2017. Trey Hensley and Jacob Dollar, both three-year starters, will be highly influential. Hensley is a defensive threat at inside linebacker, while Dollar will remain the team’s quarterback. Dollar knows the offense inside and out and is expected to be “the coach on the field”.
The 2017 season could likely be the Texans’ time to return to the postseason. Their last appearance was in 2014 when they lost to Odessa-Permian in the first round. With three returning sophomores on the offensive line, the team is full of experienced returning talent including multiple-year starters to lead on both sides of the ball. This just might be what the Texans needed to make the march into December.
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