James Robertson is the new football coach at Beatty. Last year he was the assistant coach under Leo Verzilli so he is no stranger to the territory and before that he was teaching up at Round Mountain. Robertson teaches special education at the high school. This year he will coach football in the fall and baseball in the spring.
Four years ago Robertson taught at Beatty for two years. During that time, he was the middle school football coach and in his second year he was the high school coach. As the high school coach, he said his Beatty Hornets beat Tonopah and Round Mountain in the same year for the first time in 10 years.
In his first few months as the new coach, he had a lot of problems to contend with other than football players. The high school lost a crop of grass on their football field during the summer due to flooding and now games can’t be played on that field until next year. That aside, he now concentrates on getting his team ready to play its first league game this Friday.
In addition to no grass, the team does not have too much experience. This year his team has only three seniors returning: senior running back Luis Flores, lineman Jacob Handy and defensive end Brandon Cross.
The Hornets are not short on quality quarterbacks for they have three of them and all three can run and pass. They are junior Nick Zamora, Flores and Jhon Adajar. ” I am going to rotate them around and see how it goes. We changed the offense around and will be running some Pro-Set and some single wing and the I-formation. We will even have some Pistol Offense. I want to use my speed a little more and maybe even go to the air a bit more,” Robertson said.
The coach was pleased with the amount of veteran players returning to the team. “All the freshmen we had last year, we will have back this year. Those guys learned about onside kicks and how to down punts last year. I have something to build on with the sophomores this year,” he said.
On the offense, Robertson said he has some experienced receivers returning. “Sophomore Jake Oseguera will be coming back and he had at least five touchdowns and played as well as some juniors and seniors last year. He is our leading receiver. Also returning will be Isaias Femat who was the tight end last year,” the coach said.
Robertson said his team is not big at all. “It’s all about speed this year. It worries me a bit. You play other teams like Spring Mountain, Round Mountain and even Big Pine and they all have size. We are not big at all and that’s been a problem. I will probably run a 3-4 defense this year. I want to react to the ball. I won’t blitz as much. I will use our speed. We will give up pressure and make sure they don’t get the big play. We got caught in a lot of blitzes last year. I want the team to read the play, react and gang tackle. Our kids may not have the football knowledge, but they learn through game experiences. They learn by getting their butts kicked a bit and by making mistakes,” Robertson said.
Robertson said his kids play to have a good time and it gives them something to do after school. Although the kids have a lot to learn, they are not the only ones learning out on the field. “I remember getting the job to coach here. I had told them that I had coached middle school football. Well two weeks before I started the season someone remarked, ‘Oh by the way, it’s eight-man football.’ I said, ‘What’s eight-man football?’ I had to go to a computer to look it up,” Roberstson chuckled.
Beatty played Big Pine last week and killed them 69-14. Jake Oseguera had three touchdowns. The first one was a kickoff return. He also had two receptions for touchdowns. One touchdown was thrown by Flores and one was thrown by Zamora. Jhon Adajar had three rushing touchdowns as the QB. Adajar had over 100 yards on the day.
“I played everybody but the cheerleaders. We had some guys get injured and we couldn’t put eight men on the field and played with 6. In the first half it was 40-6,” Robertson said.
The Hornets open league play at Beatty against Spring Mountain at 3:30 p.m. The school said everything is ready to go but the bleachers and they said that should be done by the game. Beatty will use one portable goalpost.
“I want to stay with Spring Mountain and contain the outside, that’s where they are good. We need good tackles and outside containment,” he concluded.