Cardinals, DuBois hit the practice field

Published 10:51 am Wednesday, August 5, 2015

BRIDGE CITY – It’s official, the Bridge City Cardinals had their first practice under the guidance of first-year head coach Dwayne DuBois Monday morning as the Cardinals look to turn their fortunes around after missing out on the postseason the last two years.

DuBois, a Bridge City alumni, is proud to be back at his alma mater.

“It feels really good to be back here,” said DuBois. “I’m really excited about getting this thing going. The kids showed up with a whole lot of enthusiasm and as coaches, we love that.”

DuBois takes over the program after leading Hardin-Jefferson to a 19-7 record and a trip to the third round of the playoffs the last two seasons. Before that, DuBois was the offensive coordinator at Vidor and the Pirates made the playoffs in 2009, 2011 and 2012.

After making the postseason four straight years (2009-2012), the Cardinals have went 4-16 overall and 2-10 in district play the last two seasons.

DuBois inherits a young team but one that got valuable experience last year as the Cardinals played a ton of sophomores and juniors a year ago.

The weather was quite nice early on Monday morning for the first workout of the season.

“It feels really good this morning but you know the heat is coming,” said DuBois. “It’s the hottest time of the year, that’s for sure. We’re pretty pleased about the turnout we had this summer and the kids came in here in pretty good shape. We have about 105 out here to start things off and we’re happy about that.”

The Cardinals will be moving away from the spread-like offense they’ve been in over the last several years as DuBois will bring his offensive philosophy to the Cardinals, which is Slot-T formations and Wing-T formations. It’s an offense that paid high dividends at both Vidor and Hardin-Jefferson.

“I think the kids are excited about the offense but there is new techniques for all of them to learn,” said DuBois. “It’s all about getting accustomed to it and it’s all about getting a bunch of reps in. That’s what these early weeks are for.”

The Cardinals will be scrimmaging at Buna Aug. 14.

Bridge City will have a pair of tall non-district tasks awaiting them to start the season.

The Cardinals travel to Kirbyville (11-2 last season) to open the season Aug. 28. The Wildcats advanced to the third round of the postseason and are ranked No. 4 in Class 3A Division I by Texas Football. Bridge City will host Newton Sept. 4. All the Eagles (12-4) accomplished last year was going to the 3A Division II State Championship Game. Newton is ranked No. 2 in Class 3A Division II.

The Cardinals host Lumberton and visit Liberty to close out non-district.

Bridge City will open District 10-4A Division I play Sept. 25 in the friendly confines of Larry Ward Stadium against Cleveland.

However, right now, it is all about getting that much-needed work in.

“This first week is vital as far as the kids picking up on the new stuff and working on conditioning,” said DuBois. “I know they can’t wait until Friday when they can lace those pads up and honestly, I can’t either. That’s when it gets really fun.”