There wasn’t a person in the state who expected the San Angelo Central Bobcats to be bad. With a mess of players returning from last year’s 11-2 squad that fell to an incredibly talented Denton Guyer team in the third round, everyone expected them to maintain the course. I don’t think anyone expected these first three weeks of the season, though.
Through three games, the lowest amount of points the Bobcats have scored is 52. They flattened a good Abilene team, limiting star running back Abram Smith to 140 yards on the ground, most of them coming in the 4th when the game was already decided. The Bobcats won that game, 63-26.
Next up was Byron Nelson. Once again, the second half scoring made the game look considerably closer than what it really was. The Bobcats won 72-35, and four of Byron Nelson’s touchdowns came in the second half, after Central had already scored 42 points. That game was not close in any sense of the word.
This brings us to last weekend’s game, where the Bobcats went on the road and shut out Kerrville Tivy by a score of 52-0. Tivy hasn’t won a game this season, but a road shutout is always some form of impressive.
The Bobcats aren’t one dimensional in the slightest. Budding star Cal Vincent has run for over 250 yards in a single game (vs Abilene) and thrown for over 250 yards in a single game (vs Tivy). They’ve scored an average of 62.333 points in their three games played and only given up an average of 20.333.
Obviously, this is early in the season. There’s no one that can be crowned a worldbeater yet. Central still has to go through Midland, who just played top-ranked Desoto very well, Permian, who’s undefeated and looking good through three weeks, and Lubbock Frenship, who’s always tough. There’s no way to proclaim the Bobcats are true deep playoff contenders yet.
However, this San Angelo Central team has the makeup of a team that can hit that mark later this year. Their backfield with Cal Vincent and running back Daven Manning is outstanding, their receivers are threats in their own way, and their defense is opportunistic as well as tough up front.
In terms of big schools, the West Texas districts haven’t had a true title contender since Abilene in 2009. Everyone else has been too slow, too small, or not had enough talent to compete with the top teams from Houston and the DFW area. This year’s San Angelo Central team has a chance to buck that trend. If they continue this dominating trend through district, they’ll definitely have a shot at bringing some of that big-school football glory out West.