There’s no denying Shane Buchele’s impressive performance last week in the Longhorns’ 50-47 victory over Notre Dame. In fact, even more impressive is that his 280 passing yards, 3 touchdowns, and being named Big 12 Conference Newcomer for the Week was accomplished as a true freshman. What fantastic news for the Longhorns! But where does that leave Buechele’s alma mater, Arlington Lamar?
The correct answer is in the hands of senior quarterback, Chance Fuller. In the first three games of the season, Fuller is already on track to surpass Buechele’s record for passing yards in a single season. Buechele finished his senior year with 2,498 passing yards. Fuller has already racked up 735 yards.
Buechele makes up only a quarter of what many refer to as the “fantastic four” from last year. Kofi Boateng, WR, plays at Arkansas, Chris Owens, OG, is a member of the Crimson Tide, and Madre Harper, CB, is now at Oklahoma State. Meanwhile, Fuller is one among many stepping up to move Arlington Lamar forward.
“We have quite a few players that are stepping up to fill the void of the fantastic four from last year,” said Kim Moyers, Lamar Viking Booster Club President. Others were evident in the Vikings’ home opener at Cravens Field Friday night in their 31-28 victory over Keller Central. Rashod Polk ran for 174 yards and 2 touchdowns, Kolby Underwood had a 100-yard kickoff return and an interception, and even Kyron Johnsnon was making his presence known.
The crew this year is being led by Fuller who has been preparing for this role whole-heartedly. “Chance Fuller has been in the shadows and has been working diligently to do everything he can to prepare himself for this season,” said the Vikings’ head coach, Laban DeLay. “He works in the weight room, on the football field, and in the way he leads this team.”
According to Coach DeLay, this season isn’t about progressing without Buechele nor moving forward with Fuller. “Our philosophy is that it it’s just one guy,” said Coach DeLay. He went on to explain that this year’s squad is a family. They don’t break into cliques. Instead, they look out for one another and help each other succeed.
The Lamar Vikings are putting it all on the field this season. “The coaches have been doing a great job putting kids in a position to succeed,” added Coach DeLay. He explained that Viking fans can expect to see effort, positive attitudes, and a team that doesn’t back down to any opponent.
The energy among the Viking community is contagious. Coach DeLay praised the wide base of stakeholders for supporting the team. Likewise, Moyers held Coach DeLay in the highest esteem. “He’s character first, then football,” she explained. “You couldn’t ask for a better man to mentor your kids.”
Fuller’s next opportunity to chip away at the passing record will come when the Vikings kickoff their district season against the Sam Houston Texans Thursday, September 22 at Wilemon Field.