Any time you have seven individuals and a trio of relay teams qualify for the Region I meet, as the Harker Heights boys and girls track and field teams did Tuesday, that is plenty of reason for excitement.

But the Knights and Lady Knights have to feel good as they prepare to head to Lubbock considering the competition they bested to get there.

Like it is in essentially every sport, District 7-5A is highly competitive in track and field, boasting state contenders on the boys and girls side.

Stop me if this sounds familiar.

But the Knights and Lady Knights went toe to toe with 7-5A athletes at the area meet and had similar success in the District 8-5A meet, when the girls repeated as champions and the boys took second.

To do that well against 7-5A means athletes from both Heights teams have a legitimate shot at qualifying for state.

For certain athletes, it means they have a good shot at winning state.

But as any coach will tell you, anything can happen on any given day at a track and field meet.

Heights, however, has to like its chances when the Region I meet kicks off in Lubbock.

Baseball: Breathing room

The Harker Heights baseball team finally has a bit of breathing room in the District 8-5A playoff race.

But the Knights aren’t focused on the teams chasing them anymore.

Instead, Heights is looking to move up in the standings just as it was earlier in the district season.

What changed that outlook was a disappointing loss to Temple, which dropped Heights from one game back of then-unbeaten Belton and Waco Midway to fourth in the 8-5A standings.

That is where Heights has remained until Friday when it finally tied the Wildcats in the standings. That is where the teams are now heading into the rematch tonight.

Heights has been a bit of a Jekyll and Hyde team this district season, but if there was ever a time to show up it’d be tonight with a chance to move up in the standings and revenge on the line.

Football: The NFL draft

This is the first year that the draft has been held in May rather than April due to a scheduling conflict at Radio City Music Hall.

Only the NFL plans to keep it this way because — well, actually I have yet to see or come up with a good reason, except that a later draft might accommodate a longer season.

Either way, the NFL has it wrong on this one.

Teams don’t need two full months to evaluate prospects, which appears to be the only difference the later date is making this offseason.

And if the end goal is an 18-game regular season — when teams can barely survive the war of attrition that is a 16-game regular season — then the NFL isn’t nearly as serious about player safety as it claims to be.

The NFL has certainly become the American pastime in recent years and wanting to be progressive in an attempt to stay that way is understandable.

But all of this comes off as overdoing it, at least to this spectator.

Contact Jordan Mason at or 254-501-7562​

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