Quick — when thinking of Copperas Cove’s offense, who is the first player who comes to mind?
Most would blurt out running back Vondareaz King’s name and rightfully so. The junior ranks fourth in District 8-5A in rushing yards despite missing two games this season, and lacks just two scores from tying Shoemaker running back Johnny Jefferson for most touchdowns.
Or perhaps senior Daniel Ruff is sitting on the tip of one’s tongue. After all, the running back has 840 yards and 10 touchdowns as King’s complement and successfully carried the rushing load while King was out of action.
Bulldawgs receiver Rashaun Gibson might even get mentioned. He has more touchdowns than any receiver in the district and only trails Midway’s Hunter Jarmon — considered by many to be the area’s best receiver — in yards and total catches.
Few, however, would probably utter the words “Robbie Seybold,” but they should.
The senior quarterback’s contributions this season are immeasurable, and without him, the Bulldawgs would be as one-dimensional as a Peanuts cartoon.
In an offense simply requiring Seybold to keep defenses honest, his numbers will not blow anybody away, but his production will. With 1,156 passing yards this season, Seybold is on the verge of cracking the top seven showings in the program’s history, and he has completed 58 percent of his passes.
His 16 touchdowns are tied for third in the district, and he has thrown only one interception, making Seybold the district’s only quarterback with more than 100 pass attempts to have thrown fewer than four interceptions. His lone interception occurred against Waco Midway six games into the season.
And he can run the ball, as well. Temple’s Zach Allen is the only quarterback with more rushing yards than Seybold’s 498.
All in all, its is a pretty impressive showing for someone who lined up as a receiver last season and was involved in a heated battle with Nick Deprisco for the starting quarterback position up until the season’s opening kickoff. For all intents and purposes, he entered the year as green as the Gulf of Mexico. Due to his poise in the pocket, nobody would know, though.
Temple certainly was not prepared for what Seybold had to offer last week. He carved up the Wildcats’ defense with pinpoint accuracy, completing 12 of 14 passes for 215 yards and five touchdowns in a 51-14 victory at Temple. For perspective, it took at least 25 pass attempts to produce four of the school’s six best single-game passing records, ranging from 239 to 252 yards.
Copperas Cove head coach Jack Welch does not ask much of Seybold, but he receives a lot from his quarterback. Seybold’s ability to consistently produce both running and passing forces defenders to account for him, allowing King and Ruff, among others, to use their speed to slip past unexpecting defenders.
Is Seybold the Bulldawgs’ most physically talented player? No.
Is he the fastest? Nope. Does he have a cannon for an arm? No again.
Can he single-handedly carry a team to victory? Probably not.
Is he the secret to Copperas Cove’s success this season? Absolutely.
And he should be the first name that comes to mind when the Bulldawgs’ offense becomes a topic of conversation.
Contact Clay Whittington at firstname.lastname@example.org