• November 27, 2014

Teams to adjust to new district, stadiums in 2012

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Posted: Friday, February 24, 2012 6:17 am

Killeen ISD’s athletic planning comes to fruition in 2012.

For the first time since 2003, all four Killeen ISD high schools share the same district and they all could host games at Fort Hood’s new Hood Stadium in the fall. Keeping up with a season of change, Ellison coach Buddy McBryde decided to forgo spring training and gain an extra week of summer workouts and an extra scrimmage in August.

Teams were allowed to finalize and release their 2012 football schedules on Tuesday.

“We chose to go to get the extra two-a-days and the extra scrimmage and, talking to some of our old coaches like coach (Bill) Farley, most of our banners in our weight room were put there by teams that didn’t have spring training,” said Ellison coach Buddy McBryde.

Instead of going through spring drills, the Eagles will start their summer workouts Aug. 6 instead of Aug. 13 and will play two scrimmages — New Braunfels and Round Rock — instead of one before their Week 0 opener.

And, for the first time since 2005, the Eagles won’t open their season against rival Killeen. That’s because for the first time since 2004, the Roos and Eagles are district rivals again.

Killeen jumped from 4A to 5A in the biennial UIL alignment earlier this month, joining Killeen ISD teams Ellison, Harker Heights and Shoemaker in District 8-5A. Also in the Central Texas district is Belton, Copperas Cove, Temple and Waco Midway, another 4A-to-5A call-up.

And there’s only a handful of games scheduled for Leo Buckley Stadium on Thursday nights this season.

Projected to be finished in August, the $13.8 million Hood Stadium is projected to host four Killeen ISD games this season that could easily be moved to Thursday nights at Leo Buckley Stadium, if the stadium is not ready to go.

“We don’t know if it’s going to be ready yet or not. I haven’t personally been over there,” McBryde said. “It’ll certainly be a little bit different because I think the field is going to be grass. For us, it’s not a big change because we always pack up to go to Buckley; we’ll pack up to go to Fort Hood Stadium.”

Ellison hosts Harker Heights in the projected stadium-opener on Oct. 12 in the first of three straight games at the location. Heights hosts Shoemaker the following week and Killeen hosts Belton on Oct. 26 in the only game at Fort Hood not between two Killeen ISD teams. Shoemaker hosts Ellison in the regular season finale on Nov. 9.

“It’s just a shorter travel time for us,” said Shoemaker coach Channon Hall. “We’re going to treat it like a home game, fire our kids up and make it feel like home.”

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