High School Sports

High school football preview: Weatherford Kangaroos


District 4-6A

Last season: 1-9 (1-6 in District 3-5A)

Key players: QB Bryce Burks (5-11, 160), RB/DB Draven Pointer (5-11, 180), RB Jeuqwan Brownlee (5-10, 190), WR Chase Warren (5-9, 160), T/DT James Robinson (6-5, 265), T/DE Keegan Dement (6-3, 260).

The big picture: Coach Weldon Nelms is trying to establish a winning program at Weatherford, and he has the track record to make that happen.

At Wimberley, he won state titles in 2005 and 2011. The Kangaroos return 14 starters from a season ago. Despite winning one game last season, Nelms’ squad is far more experienced after starting 12 sophomores in 2013.

“Last year, it was tough for the kids to learn a new system. The kids gained experience and have learned the system and understand what’s going on. I feel more confident going into this season than I did last season,” Nelms said.

Junior running back Jeuqwan Brownlee will be the leader on offense after rushing for 714 yards and nine touchdowns, but will miss the early part of the season due to a “summer recreational injury.”

Draven Pointer leads the defense after posting 49 tackles and forcing four fumbles in 2013.

“Draven had a really good spring. He played running back and free safety for us and he’s real quick and real smart. He’s one that can do big, big things for us. ... He’s been a pleasant surprise,” Nelms said.

Quotable: “Our goals and expectations are higher, we had a good off-season, and the kids are adapting. We just have to stay healthy. Our depth isn’t that strong compared to the other schools.” — Weldon Nelms

“We aren’t the fastest team, so we have to play very disciplined. We must eliminate turnovers and create more takeaways.” — Nelms

“Jeuqwan [Brownlee] is a very special talent. We hope to get him back soon, but he’s special. He’s a kid that can play at the next level.” — Nelms

Notable: Since going 11-2 in 1999, the Kangaroos have gone 32-78. Weatherford plays six of 10 at home, including starting the season with Lubbock Coronado and finishing against Arlington Bowie. New teams on the schedule include Grapevine, Irving Nimitz and a Coronado team that finished 2-8 in 2013.