Had to go a little out of the way to find me a source on UTPB Football, but we found DonJon from Pigskinprep.com who is a graduated of UTPB and lives in Odessa and is an avid Falcon supporter. He was nice enough to sit down and discuss the Falcon program and the upcoming matchup with his team.
TLW: “First, what are your overall thoughts on this game?”
DJ: “It is going to be tough. Commerce has a very good and very potent team. I looked and saw that you are hosting Senior Day, dedicating your field to a former coach, and also have Armed Services appreciation. That is a lot of people coming into your town and so the environment will be tough, so getting a win is tough.
TLW: “How satisfied are you with the progress of the program so far?”
DJ: “It has its ups and downs. For example, we lost to Sul Ross State to open the season, but we beat a talented Western New Mexico team. The LSC is a tough football conference, and every week you are going against good teams. Even teams that may be struggling a little bit right now like West Texas and Angelo are still good teams, just in a tough conference. Right now the fans just want a presentable product on the field, and if Coach Carrigan can keep recruiting, you will see more improvement as the years go by.”
TLW: The LSC seems to have so many new faces in the head coaching ranks, tell us about Justin Carrigan.”
DJ: “Well, he should be familiar to LSC fans. He was the offensive coordinator at Tarleton and they put up some points when he was there. He prefers balance is not a really run happy or pass happy coach. He understands you have to have personnel that will execute your game plan, and that also means adjusting to what your players do well.”
TLW: “At the past two LSC media days, Carrigan has voted his team first. Some people have kind of snickered or laughed at this. I actually like the attitude. What say you?”
DJ: “Oh I agree. I think that sends two messages from a coach to a team. One is that he has high expectations and he is willing to put his reputation on the line, and the second is that he believes in the players and the team. If a player knows his coach has his back, that is a big part of getting them to buy into the system.”
TLW: “What are the chances that Ratliff Stadium stays as your home field for a while?”
DJ: “It probably will be a while and I think it should stay that way. I want your average kid who plays against us to be in awe of the place, and the fact that our kids and the players from the other team play on a field and in a place with so much Texas football lore is a huge selling point, plus what tailback does not want to run on the same field that Boobie Miles did?”
TLW: “What matchup are you most interested in?”
DJ: “I am very anxious to see if our defense has improved. That will be a tall order though as I said earlier. Luis Perez is in my opinion, the best QB, if not the best player in all of Division 2. He is a legitimate NFL prospect and should be a Harlon Hill finalist and very well could win it. Your skill guys are very talented, and I am curious to see how we match up with them. I also think you guys have a strong running game. The kid from Greenville was steal and when I look at his HS stats, I wonder how he was not snatched up by a bigger school. You guys are the real deal.”
TLW: “How do you see The Falcons doing in the next couple of years?”
DJ: “I think that getting one or two good recruiting classes will boost up our results. I do not see a problem in getting to 4-5 wins next year. That will win us more recruits, and I do think you will see the games with other West Texas schools like Angelo and WT getting more intense, as we are all about regional pride out here and every school wants to be the best.”
TLW: “Care to predict a score?”
DJ:”I saw the Falcons score early once, but the Lions are just too good, 55-17 Lions.”
Thanks to Donjon on the information. Here is to a great game!