2012 VARSITY Football Schedule (1-0)

Striving to be 1-0 after we play Cedar Ridge on Friday

August 31-- Hendrickson (WIN 50-23)
September 7 @Cedar Ridge
September 14 @ Hays
September 21-- Del Valle
September 28-- Dripping Springs
October 5 @ Leander
October 12-- Marble Falls
October 19 @ Cedar Park
November 2-- Vandegrift
November 9 @ Vista Ridge

Currently 1-0 on the Season

Number of Visitors since August 2010

Total Pageviews since August 2009

NOTE from Brandi

check out the new email feature on the right hand side of the page. You can sign up with your email (I will never see it), and each time I update, you will get an email saying that i updated the blog:)

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Promise I am not abandoning this site

I will update before Christmas, I promise! This site is my baby, and I am dying to update it, but I have a bad habit of creating Christmas projects and I am right in the middle of that. So, I promise to get back to this when I am finished up!

Until then, enjoy the remainder of High School football season and be sure to follow the Lake Travis Cavaliers. How awesome to have a Semi-Final Contender in our District!! Beat Friendswood!!!!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

"When you make a commitment, when you decide to do something, you stick with it."

I am so incredibly humbled today. 

I have an amazing life and family. I have choices-even though sometimes I don't always make the right one. I have freedom to say whatever I want- even though THAT gets me in more trouble than ever.
I have an amazing life. I love it. I wouldn't change a thing at all. I married into football- and I have 2 boys that will grow up to be football players (I think:)

I have an incredible coach, who is an amazing husband to me. He is also the best father that any kid could dream to have. He is hardworking and loyal and will do anything for his kids. Not just for Jace and Judson, but for all 200 of his kids. And fortunately, Jace and Judson do not mind sharing him.

I have these things in my life because of our Military who fights for out country for ME. They risk their lives for my and my family, so that I can have these things in my life and you can have the things in your life that you cherish the most.

I know that for the last year we have done a lot to recognize our military here at Rouse. We have ALWAYS had a ton of respect for our troops, but it wasn't until Jay Severe passed away that we really felt that it made a huge impact on us. And today I realized how many times something or some situation had been thrown in our faces that made us take a step back and really think about our Armed Forces and through FOOTBALL, we were able to recognize them.

1) First it was Jay Severe's death- and we hosted a game in honor of him.
2) Second it was Tyler Hawkin's Grandfather that was spending time in Iraq. He is/was a Chaplain in the Military.
3) Third, it was Deanna Roger's organizing the toy box for the Military troops to send over to Iraq, Our school donated so much stuff that they shipped a 300lb box over to IRAQ!
4) Fourth- because of that 300lb box, they wanted to honor us, by sending the American Flag that they flew over their base to Rouse. It was presented to us at the Pep Rally and it now resides in a flag box on the Athletic Office.
5) In June, my friend Lindsay and her husband moved back to NY because Michael re-enlisted in the Navy. That got me once again thinking and once again appreciating the life I have.
6) Thursday was Veteran's Day and honestly, I must be a bad parent because I forget to tell my kids about this stuff. Shame on me. But when Jace got home from school, he asked me to turn on the news and then he grabbed my newspaper- which truthfully, I only had because it featured an article that I happened to be interviewed in. He looked all through the paper looking at the military pictures. I went upstairs to take a shower and when I came out he told me all about what he saw on CNN, then he wanted to call my Grandpa because he knew he was a Marine and the man on the news was a Marine. He talked to my Grandpa for almost 30 minutes and told him ALL about Veterans Day and embarrassed as I am to admit this, he actually told ME stuff that I didn't know. I was so impressed and it taught me that I need to talk to my boys about these things and they aren't too young. Jace is interested in 2 things, Football and Army stuff. He actually will play with Army men. (now, he puts them with his football players- as he does the pre-football stuff with his plastic players, which was the original reason he wanted them:) ha
7) and now, a touching story, got me motivated to once again find away to recognize our military troops, only this will be much easier as it involved an Amazing football coach at Maritime College. His name is Clayton Kendrick Holmes

This is not a Veteran's Day post, this is much more near and dear to my heart.
Lindsay, sent me a text this morning about watching a special on ESPN. This coach is a personal friend on MY friends.  I didn't get to watch it, so I googled it- please view the following video and then click the ESPN link to view the ESPN video as well.
As you read in my last post, I am not a crier, don't cry. Well, I had tears running down my face while watching this.

The ESPN story

What an amazing impact this man gets to make. I know first hand the commitment and time it takes to be a coach. As a coach you are not just A coach, you are also a mentor, a teacher, in some cases a father figure. This man gets to make an impact on the athletes AND gets to fight for our country. What an amazing message he is sending these kids.

He had an impact on me today. He made me appreciate what I have. For some reason my brain functions in a way that things only affect me deeply if it involves football. I know how strange that MUST sound. But honestly football is SO dear to me. Its not because of Josh, it was that way for me LONG before I met him. If I was a boy,  I wouldn't be the best athlete, but I guarantee I would have MORE heart than anyone on the team. I truly don't think I could function without football in my life in some major way.

I have always had a huge respect for our Military, but I never really talked about it, nor did I think about it too much. However, once Jay passed away, it really put things into perspective for me and for the past year, one thing after another has been thrown into our lives that made us step back and think about it more and more. In 1 year, 7 things have happened and it just so happens that this last thing involved NOT ONLY the military, but football and not only football, but the man is a football coach.

Today, I am humbled. I know the hours that a coach works and if it wasn't for the fact that i GO to the school to see Josh, I wouldn't see him. I can't imagine not having the option of seeing my husband. I can't imagine fearing for the life of my husband on a daily basis, and I do not ever want to. I am so blessed that I do not have to worry about these things, because this man, this coach, that is sacrificing for me and you.

I know there are a lot of service men and women out there that need our prayers and I ask that you pray for them and add Clayton and Johanna Kendrick-Holmes and their boys to it as well.

I don't know them personally, but my friend does and I am SO grateful to Lindsay for telling me about this story. Its been on my mind all day, and somehow, some way, I am going to worm my way into his wife's life! I want to talk to her. From one Coaches Wife to another:) Only she could probably impact ME more than I could her.

Their game will air tomorrow night on ESPNews at 3pm. We should get that channel (THANK YOU Direct TV:) and I will certainly be watching it. If you have a chance, you should watch it too and remember to send good Raider thoughts their way so that they can keep their season alive.

"When you make a commitment, when you decide to do something, you stick with it."
-- Clayton Kendrick Holmes of SUNY Maritime College

Thursday, November 11, 2010

What its like to be married to a coach!

Here is a neat article that Tammy Williamson did for the Hill Country News. She interviewed several Coaches Wives in the area:)

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


 Rouse Raiders 
 wishes the following teams 
Good Luck in the 2010 Football Playoffs!!

Navarro vs. Liberty Hill (8-2), 7:30 p.m. Friday, Manor

West Mesquite (8-2) vs. Pflugerville Hendrickson (5-5), 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Waco ISD Stadium

 **Cedar Park (10-0) vs. Austin LBJ (5-5), 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Leander's Gupton Stadium
**Austin McCallum (6-4) vs. Lake Travis (8-2), 7 p.m. Thursday, Austin's House Park

**Cedar Park Vista Ridge (8-2) vs. Austin Travis (7-3), 7:30 p.m. Friday, Austin's Nelson Field

**Austin Crockett (4-6) vs. Marble Falls (5-5), 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Marble Falls

 Thank you to all of you who helped to make us a better team in the future. Looking forward to reversing the scores next season:)

Raiders lose their final game to Vista Ridge

Honestly, I am having a hard time today. I HATE losing, I hate it for SO many reasons, but this past loss was like a knife in my heart. I felt so bad for the coaches and the players and even our fans.

I honestly and truly believe that if we had played Vista earlier in the season that we would have played them a closer game. I think by our last game of the season, we were just defeated. You could see it in the kids by the way they came out from the locker room. Not having Logan hurt us too.

We started out the game WAY better than I expected, getting the 3 and out, and we drove the ball down the field the second drive, but by the third series, they were on the board and weren't stopping. With a 40-0 lead at halftime, things were looking bleak for the Raiders. I took that time to run to the bathroom and tear up by myself.

I never cry. It is VERY rare that you will see me crying and if  I am crying, its because
1) I am mad or 2) because something emotional happened in my favorite sport.

Anyhow, so I went and cried. I just felt so bad and I knew Josh would take another loss very hard and very personal.

After I finally calmed myself down, I left the bathroom and ran into Mrs. Rouse- whom I just love to death. She said some VERY encouraging words and just made me feel so much better. I appreciate everything she said and took it straight to heart.

The second half didn't get much better than the first half, and I was just ready for it to end. I was a bit miffed at the very fact that their starters didn't come out until 4th quarter. At the very least they could have taken #5 out a bit sooner. Seems to me that they wouldn't want to chance getting any of them hurt the week before playoffs, however, I just you could look at it from the flip side and maybe they wanted to give their guys some practice- who knows.

Hey! Where any of you impressed with our band at the end of the game? They looked like they were having a blast and I enjoyed every second of it! Our band is small, but they sure can play when they want to! That "performance" at the end of the game is exactly what I love to watch in a band. I also enjoy the drum-line at the beginning of every 3rd quarter- I just love that and think its so cool to watch. The band can make all the difference in the game sometimes, and its fun when you can see the band actually enjoying themselves as well!

Special Thank You to Bill Rogers who organized the Spirit Line at the end of the game. I thought that was exceptionally nice of him to set that up. I know Josh and the players appreciated it and it was so awesome to witness. Thank you Bill and thank you Mr. Graham for allowing us to go down on the field to do it.

**I will be going back and adding names of those that took these pictures, just give me a few days to get this done:)

As this season comes to a close, I just want to say thank you to everyone. The players, the coaches, the cheerleaders, the Royals, The Band,  the fans, the coaches wives, the Booster Club, the administration, the teachers and the students for coming out and supporting our Raiders each and every week.

Raiders vs Vista Ridge Pep Rally

Here is a bunch of pictures and video from the pep rally this morning!

I was watching the dancers and looked over and saw that Judson was standing in his chair to see better. He didn't take his eye off of them! ha

For Whatever reason, Judson decided to dance robotic. I have NO clue where he gets his love for attention. Can't imagine neither Josh, nor I passing off THAT trait:) haha.. I also do not know where get got his moves. I am NOT that great of a dancer:)

Pep Rally #1

Pep Rally #2

Pep Rally #3

Pep Rally #4

Pep Rally #5
Pep Rally #6

Pep Rally #7

Pep Rally #8

Friday, November 5, 2010

I Believe in You

Always believe in YOU.
Listen to your heart.
Trust your instincts.
Know you CAN.
See your own strengths.
Dream it- Dare it.
DO what you are afraid of.
Keep the Faith
Follow your vision.
Remember ANYTHING is possible
if only you Believe.

I read this at our first playoff pep rally in High School. I found it today.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Raiders in a Heart Breaking loss to Vipers 31-29 final

Remember my post about my last High School football game my Senior year when we lost in the 3rd Round of the Playoffs and we were a 2-8 team that went 4-9. Remember how sad I said that i was?

Multiple that night's sadness and tears by 36 and you will maybe get a glimpse of how I felt when our game ended.
Never, ever have I been so heart broken. Even my Senior year, I was sad, but didn't cry (until I got in the car)

Last night I cried. On the Sidelines.
I don't cry in front of people- EVER. (unless I am mad)
and I am STILL at a loss for words. I really don't know how to begin to write this.

So I am just going to start and hope I do it justice. Also, PLEASE forgive any errors that you see. I do not have a memory like Josh does and I don't keep notes during the game, so if I am off, send me an email and I will correct it:)

The game started out rough for the Raiders as it was 14-7 by the end of the first quarter- Ed Butts with the 8 yard touchdown run. Fortunately we scored in the second quarter, but they returned a touchdown making the score 21-14 (Tai on that TD) Right before the half, we got a turnover. With only time to run 1 play, the clock ran out and we headed into the locker room. Hated that we didn't have have time to make another play, but I was thankful that we at least had a smidge of momentum going into the half.

Normally I am calm and collected until 4Th quarter, but being down a touchdown at half was not helping my nerves, so I was pacing back and forth quite a bit during halftime. I am not sure why, being down by a TD wasn't bad, but I just didn't think we were playing to our full potential. yes we scored 14, but we just didn't seem to be clicking. Thankfully my Grandparents and my brother came to the game because I didn't have to worry about my kids as I was swearing under my breath and fidgeting.

Was it me, or did halftime seem FOREVER??

Finally, finally 3rd quarter got there and I became even more tense as the Vipers took it in for another touchdown, making the score 28-14 and the entire third quarter belonged to them as they shut us out completely.

This was not good, not good at all.

So I am thinking this is it, we are done and then somehow the football Gods decided to give us a boost and we came out and Tai scored in the fourth. Being 28-21, now that isn't so bad. We still have some life and we were most definitely still IN the game. There was 7 minutes and 21 seconds left on the clock. All we needed was a touchdown and a field goal to tie it up. (now let me say, Overtime scared the living daylights out of me- we have never had to experience overtime)

With the clock dwindling, at 3 minutes, I was swearing more than a sailor (sorry, sorry), and I started packing up my stuff. Never before in a Raider game have I been so on edge that I couldn't sit in my seat. I threw my shaker bottle (which is very precious to me) on the ground and I just paced. Then I started packing up my stuff b/c Lord knows I bring a ton of stuff to the game.
Then it happened.
We got a break, with 1:53 minutes left in the game we got the ball back.

I haven't seen the stands more pumped and me, with my usual obsessive need to film. I couldn't. I was scared I would break my camera (or curse on film), so I didn't. At 1:22, Tai got to the 20 yard line and ran out of bounds. My issue: they didn't stop the clock for 3 seconds and never put the time back on. I couldn't get over that, but I forgot all about it when Tai found and open spot and ran the ball in for a Raider touchdown with 55 seconds left on the clock, making the score 28-27 still Vipers.
I can't begin to tell you about the stands. We were ALL screaming, hugging, jumping up and down and SO incredibly excited.

I know Josh and I knew what he would do, so I hurried myself and grabbed my camera because I knew I had to have the film from the next play.

I knew Josh would go for 2. That just made sense. Go for 2 and get it, you are ahead, Go for the FG and then you are tied and have to go into overtime. That's too much pressure for our kids. Plus Josh is just gutsy and that's why I love to watch him coach:)

I was so excited. Logan had a wide open space and he could have walked it in if he had wanted to.

This was the opportunity we needed and in that very moment, we won that game.

But I knew better than to get too excited, because I can not tell you how many games I have been to that a team was winning only to realize there was too much time on the clock, and unfortunately that is what happened to us. (it happened to us in the Boerne game last year when we beat them on the last 35 seconds of the game)

There was 53 seconds left.

Doesn't sound like too much time does it? 53 seconds is pretty quick, but in football time, it can last 5 minutes.

Looking at the clock after the conversion, I dropped everything, my shaker, my bag, my family and just ran. I did manage to yell for the boys, but I kept running hoping they would catch up. So with my grandparents, and brother left to fend for themselves with my propane tank, 2 backpacks, stadium chair and the boys helmets in the stands, the boys and I sweet talked the gate keeper into letting us on the sidelines.
I pretty much had already decided that the second the clock expired that we would be climbing the fence if we needed to, just to get to Josh, but thankfully the gatekeeper took mercy on me and let us through.
So fortunately and unfortunately I watched the last 40 seconds from the sidelines and captured every heartbreaking moment on video- yes, even the controversial last 3 seconds on the clock.

After our conversion, we kicked off to the Vipers, they took the ball to their 30 yard line and we held them for 3 downs. We kept them behind the 40 for 3 downs. Then on the 4Th down, they didn't have anything to lose because there was only 7 seconds on the clock, so they got ready for the long pass, the QB backs up, our guy gets ahold of him for the sack and he reverses and get out of our guys hand and throws the pass to a Viper receiver and they catch it on the 10 yard line with 3 seconds left on the clock. They line up and Vandegrift spikes the ball and the clock ran out. Done, the buzzer buzzes and we won the game.

Or so we thought

The officials came back and said that when he spiked the ball that there was 1 second left on the clock. Enough time for one more play. There was definitely some controversy over this call because the clock buzzed, but the officials made the right call and there was 1 second left.
Enough time for Vandergrift to line up and kick a field goal. All we could hope for was a FG block or a turnover. Unfortunately it just wasn't our night and they nailed the kick. Game over 31-29 Vipers.

I am sorry that you didn't get to see that kick. I was sick to my stomach- literally. I thought I was going to throw up, so I literally did not watch it. I crouched down and put my head between my legs because I was so nauseous. I just wanted this win so much for the coaches and the players.

We deserved to win that game. But so did the Vipers.

After the game, I went back into the stands to grab my stuff (and my family) and head back to the locker room to see Josh. Man, that was tough. Never before has it been that tough to face him after a game. I didn't know what to say, so I didn't. I just gave him a hug.

One thing I can say about this Raider team. We didn't give up. Not once. And NEVER once, that I know of, have we ever come from behind to win a game. We didn't win Friday night, but we sure came close and we sure played like we wanted to win. I am so proud of our guys.
I got a taste of something I have been missing for 3 years. I got to watch Josh coach. I know I have watched him coach for the last 3 years, but Friday night, he got to really coach. Because we were playing a team that was more equal to us than we have played all year and Josh got to coach a game. I love to watch him. I love that he went for 2 and didn't think about it- just did it. Some of you have said how gutsy it was for him to do that- honestly, you just got a glimpse of how he can really coach and how much fun he has doing it.

I am NOT ready for this season to end. Not at all. I know we haven't won a game, but I love Friday nights and I have missed it so much. I know its time and I know that this season has been tough on SO MANY levels, but we just have to keep working and keep believing because all these teams that have beat us, will get to face us again next year and I guarantee after another full season in the weight room, that next year WE will be the team to beat.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Am Email from a Vandegrift parent:

Josh sent me this email a few minutes ago- from a Viper football mom. I can say that from the writers standpoint, that she meant her words. I have sent SEVERAL coaches emails or a written note after games, when I have seen or felt something positive. I didn't take the time to do it and not mean what I said. It takes a lot of time and thought to put together and email like this one and we sure do appreciate what she said:

Dear Coach Mann, All Rouse Coaches, and Football Players,

I am a parent of a Vandegrift varsity football player who watched the Rouse vs. Vandegrift varsity game on Friday night at Bible Stadium. It was, to say the least, an exciting game. I just wanted to take a moment to say how impressed I was after the game when your football players stood respectfully in a line behind our players when our school song was played. I have not seen a team do this at any game I have attended, and I have to say that I admire your team and coaches very much after witnessing this display. Your young men played a terrific game and obviously have great sportsmanship. I may be a Vandegrift Mom, but I am now also a Rouse Raiders fan.
(I only wrote her initials. I didn't ask permission to put this email in here, so I didn't want to write her full name)

The very ironic thing about this email is that Josh got the idea from Rockdale. I can not tell you how I felt when they turned and stood for out school song and that next week, I sent him and email telling him thank you and Good Luck with the rest of their season. So its kind of like, "Pay it forward" because I sent Rockdale a thank you email about this little tradition and then we get an email for it in return.

I know from reading some of your facebook posts that many of you are upset at the other side of the stadium because they were screaming during our school song.

As you know I have attended High School football games my entire life and honestly, this is not much different at any other school.
Its not classy and definitely not something I am going to encourage, but Its part of the game and part of being a fan. It's not fun sometimes, but never the less, when you are on the winning side, its just a reaction. And when you are on the losing side, its just a reaction to be upset over. Don't take it personal, its part of the fun- even though its not always fun for one side.

We will have our turn very soon. This year has just been a tough year, but I promise it will turn around:)

*** I am working on my blog post over the game. This one is tough to write, but I will get it done by tomorrow.


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

As of right now we are both 0-0 for the week

This week's game is not going to be a game like you have seen all season- from either side.
Vandegrift Vipers may be 3-5 overall, but they are 0-4 in district. Nothing really matters until you get to district.
However, I have heard some say that they are the better team because they have the better record.
I'll give them that- they do have the better record- on paper only.

Lets take a look at their Non-District Schedule:

55-14 WIN over Austin Lanier (3-5 overall) (2-2 in their district)
28-31 Loss to Taylor (1-7 overall)(0-3 in their district)
21-14 WIN over Boerne(7-7 overall)(1-3 in their district) and yes, somehow, they have played 14 games to date according to Max Preps. I don't think this is correct.
42-2 WIN over Austin Crockett (2-6 overall) (2-2 in their district)

Lets look at our Non-District Schedule
34-14 loss to Liberty Hill (6-2 overall) (3-0 in their district)
62-27 loss to Bryan Rudder (6-2 overall) (2-2 in their district)
34-21 loss to Pfugerville Hendrickson (4-5 overall) (2-3 in their district)
17-14 loss to Lampasas (5-3 overall) (1-2 in their district)

I would say that by looking at it at first glance, it seems we played a pretty even non-district schedule. But if you break it down even further and look at who THOSE teams beat and who is in their district, as opposed to who we played, then I say we have the upper hand.

But we can throw ALL of this stuff out the window, because as of this week the
Raiders and the Vipers are both 0-0

This week the game in its entirety will be different and unlike any that either of us have played so far. Its a rival game. If there is anything I am an expert at- its knowing about Rival games.

Rival games are intense and are a battle for Pride.

This game is going to be based on PRIDE. We are both winless in district, we are both in a tough district with only 3 classes, and we are both hungry for a big fat W.

To say I am nervous is a complete understatement. I have never in my life been more nervous about a game, other than when I was in High School, only difference now, is that football is literally what feeds our family:)

Rival game scare the living daylights out of me. It doesn't matter what kind of record a team has, a rival game can go either way. Especially a game like we will be playing tomorrow night. Football is mental and 95% of the way in which the athletes perform on the field is based on their mentality at the time of the game. There is going to be a lot of pressure on both teams to win this game and its going to be a dogfight until the end.
For the past 3 days, I have been the following:
anxious, nervous, excited, extremely sad, stressed, amazed, at a loss for words, temperamental, and eager.
I am so ready for this game. I am ready for a win and I am ready to watch our guys play and our coaches coach to the best of their abilities.

I KNOW we CAN win this game and I am READY to watch our guys celebrate on the sideline when the clock runs out.
I can't think of anything else that I want to experience right now.

Good Luck to our Rouse Raiders tomorrow night: lets prove this week's slogan right. I will pray to the football Gods that they are on our side and to the football angels for no injuries for either team. Go out and play your best and bring home a Victory. I know you want it as much as I do.

Watch out Vipers.. This Night Belongs to the Raiders

Did you know...

That currently the 2010 Rouse Raider football team is LEADING the district in fumble recoveries and interceptions?

Do you know how amazingly awesome that is?

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Raiders fall to Lake Travis 62-14

I am still a believer, don't doubt that:)

Last night was a tough one. BUT, as I was thinking about this on the way home, IF we had played Lake Travis any closer, then we wouldn't be playing good teams. I don't mean that offensively at all, but we SHOULDN'T be able to play with them. As much as I would have liked to believe we could, we can't- and I am glad. I am glad because if we were able to do that, then the following wouldn't mean anything:

1) We just scored 2 touchdowns against the #3 team in the State. A team that has won 3 BACK TO BACK state championships. Their only loss in 49 games was to Aledo, who is dang good! Aledo was the 2009 defending State Champion in Division II- 4a

2) Those 2 touchdowns, were more than any other team in district has scored on them.

3) We won the second half. Which may not mean much to them, but to us- its a huge victory.
I heard someone say that, "so what, we won the second half, big deal, they had their 2nd string in"
My response, "1) really, because they had their 2nd string in when they Vista and Vandegrift and I am pretty sure THEY didn't score 2 touchdowns on them, and 2) Its not like their 2nd string was crappy, because they weren't!"

I wish I could say I was positive the entire game. Apparently I am still learning. I had a hard time with the fact that LT chose to keep their starters in the entire first half and I had a REALLY hard time with the on-side kick, but all of that is part of football and something I took personal, which shame on me. I'll get over it, especially because it will all come back to haunt them at some point! ha... Actually we have friends over at LT and they are good people, so even though I did take it personally, I also know that LT is a good solid program and they weren't trying to be jerks.
I am witnessing to all of you right now, that my mission is to be a better opposing team, football coaches wife in the stands, so if you catch me running my mouth, remind me of this post.

We are in a TOUGH district, probably the toughest in Central Texas and pretty close to the top of the toughest in the state and while I hate it because I know we are fighting so hard to get that win, I am also so glad that we didn't get stuck in some 3a, where we are playing teams that aren't known for being powerhouses. God put us where we are for a reason, and I am going to trust him to know what he is doing with our team.

We have some fighters on our team. Logan Kinder #2 is just one of them. i just LOVE watching him play. He is fun to watch and I can just imagine the smack he is talking on the field. He really makes me think of Judson when I watch him. Judson will be like that, which is why i think Logan is so fun to watch.

Jaykob Gomez #92- LOVE watching Jaykob. Last night he had one of the best games he has had. He lit up their division I (#77) guy and I think he may have even tackled the QB in the 2nd half. He whipped up on 77 ALL NIGHT
Want to know what I love about this guy? He is an example to EVERY football player that is an average player.
I don't want to offend Jaykob by writing this, so I hope (if he reads this) that this is NOT my intention. Its actually a TRUE and inspiring compliment.
When Jaykob started as a Freshman, he was a B-team football player. I am not sure if he even started, or if he was just a back-up, but either way, the kids was an ok player. But the more his Freshman year progressed, the more he learned and the better he got at his position. He was and is a good kid, very quiet and shy:)
Fast forward to his Sophomore year, we only had 1 JV team, so he moved up and he was a defensive end backup. Jaycob came to practice every day, made his grades and did what was asked of him. He didn't complain and he didn't make excuses. If he screwed up in practice, he fixed it. Jaycob wasn't selfish, he didn't care if he started, he loved being a part of the team and that was what was important to him.
One game he had to step up and be the starter, it was unfortunate for the player, but fortunate for Jaycob because Gomez has remained the starting defensive end since that game back in 2009- he kept the position even after the guy that originally had it, was able to come back. He was the Star of the Week on Defense last week and has made play after play for our defense.
I am so proud for #92. He earned that position because he worked hard. He isn't just a naturally gifted athlete, he is good because he works hard and to me personally, I think that will take him so far in life.

We have a lot of kids stepping up and playing their little hearts out. I have a video of Travis Leslie stripping the ball away from a Cavalier. Not sure if many of you know this, but Travis is a starting Linebacker. He is 15- BARELY 15. He turned 15 in August. If you know much about football, you know that while Quarterback is the most important position on offense , the Linebackers are the most important on Defense. And a 15 year old Leslie is one of them. Great kid and I know that he is just going to keep making us proud.
(Thank you to Travis's sister: Brandi Leslie, for sending it to me:)

We have a lot of hardworking and gifted athletes on our team. Its guys like these that make this team who we are and we can't give up. We have to focus on the positive things we have done, not the negative and keeping fighting. And we, as fans, have to fight for them because they need us believing in them

I love this team, I love our guys. I hate losing, but I will take the good with the bad because these kids and these coaches and our parents mean so much to me.
I appreciate what you guys have done for me in return. I look forward to every day. I look forward to Josh coming home and telling me about practice, or about some funny thing that some athlete did, or some thing that really bothered him that some kid did or said. Its not all GOOD things that I hear, but I hear about it because Josh cares and he knows I care. I don't really get to contribute to any of that officially, but I get to see how it effects him, both good and bad.
I love knowing about these kids, it makes my job as his wife, so much easier and so much more fun. I trust our guys and I trust them around Jace and Judson. And Jace and Judson love them. The boys have these football players that are small and plastic (they have full sets of teams) and the players have numbers on them. You can buy them online at Kaskey Kids
Anyhow, they have about 5 different sets of teams, and the one and only thing Jace wants for Christmas (from Santa) is a set of Rouse Raider teams. And he has specified their numbers. He brought me our roster and specifically said he wanted every kid on our current team's numbers on his players and he wants our official jersey's.
Now, how in the hell Santa will pull this off, is beyond me, but the point is that our boys idolize our players. If they don't know them by name, then they know them by number and they know most everyone's positions.
If we didn't have good athletes that were good with our boys, I would not let them around our boys. I don't know how many of you reading this are parents, or are athletes, but know that the Raiders are role models to my kids.

One thing that happened at the end of the game, that I thought was cool, is when Lake Travis played their school song, our guys turned around and stood watching their team and one of the coaches, hit another and said "How classy is that" and they turned around and did it for us. We have Rockdale to thank for us adopting this little classy tradition. We thought that was so neat how they did it for us and I think its great that we picked that up.

Sorry, this post didn't exactly have much to do with Lake Travis. I am sure I will edit it as I think of things. I do that often!

Listen to Coach Mann's interview on Friday Night Fanstand (I even got a shout out- thank you FNF

**Thank you to Peggie Kinder for allowing me to stalk her facebook and steal some photo's that she took:)

Hill Country News Article

Lake Travis View

Coach Mann on Talk Radio 1370

10-23-10 Talk Radio 1370

I want to talk about this for a minute. First off, I loved the interview. But anytime that I get to hear Josh speak, I love it!!

But the other thing that I thought was WAY COOL is the interviewer! Coach Derek Long!

For some of you that do not know who he is, Coach Derek Long is the former coach at Westlake High School. He was their Head Coach for 6 years and coached there for 26 years!

While At Westlake:
-part of 271-64-6 record
-1996 State Championship
-Six State Finalist Teams
-Three State Semifinalist Teams
-Four State Quarterfinalist Teams

And as the Head Coach:
-Record of 54-22
-District Champions 2004, 2005, and 2008
-State Semifinalist 2003
-State Finalist 2006
-State Quarterfinalist 2008
-2006 5A Coaching Staff of the Year
-2006 Tex Kassen Sportsmanship Award
-District Coach of the Year 2004, 2005, 2008

Its funny because when I was listening to the interview, and he introduced himself as Coach Long, I was wondering why I knew that name, and I asked Josh and he told me he was the former HC of Westlake, I was so excited. I remember watching them when he coached there and I remember when he left Westlake. I love his voice! Reminds me of Sam Elliot:)

Anyhow, I thought this was a cool interview and to be interviewed by sure a awesome coach was way cool!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Are you a Believer?

Woke up this morning with a really good feeling. I feel calm and I feel excited and I feel like I BELIEVE we can come out and surprise some people.

These last few weeks, things have been tough and tense and emotional in the Mann household. Its hard to lose and its hard to watch your husband beat himself up over things that really are somewhat out of his control. But on Tuesday he came home in an UNbelievable mood that made me feel that excitement that I used to feel instead of the dread that I have been feeling lately

I BELIEVE in our team. I always did and would never, NOT believe in them. When I wrote my post yesterday, it really made ME feel a lot of things. Its hard to convince people to believe when you aren't getting the results you want. I could tell you all about my Senior year and you wouldn't understand because you weren't there to witness it. I BELIEVED in my team then and I believe in this one now.

But if you aren't convinced that we CAN do it, then you aren't a believer.

The definition of Believe:
a psychological state in which an individual holds a proposition or premise to be true

I looked up Believe on Wiktionary and this is what I learned about being a Believer in something:
--To accept as true without empirical evidence.
--To accept that someone is telling the truth
--To consider likely.
--To have religious faith; to believe in a greater truth

The Rouse Raiders can go out and play with Lake Travis tonight. I believe it. In truth, ANY team can beat another on any given night. It happens all the time. It happened to my 1998 Rider Raider football team and we went on to beat 2 legitimately GOOD teams in the playoffs. We weren't supposed to even be IN the playoffs- hell we got in on a coin toss! And we definitely we NOT supposed to beat 2 teams and almost beat another!

But they did- and the 2010 First Ever Rouse Raider Varsity Football team can too.
Mind over Matter

I am a Believer! How about you?

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Rouse Raiders aren't much different than the 1998 Rider Raiders

I have been wanting to write this for a long time, but its hard to write about because its hard for me to separate my feelings from football in general. For ME personally, as most of you know, football is obviously my life. Its always been that way and honestly, football is more than anything, exactly what brought Josh and I together in the first place. So football plays on SO many angles in my life, that when I sit down to write, its hard for me to stick to one thing before going off on another thing and before I know it, my post is a tangled mess of football! ha

This has been a year that I didn't expect. I can honestly say that if someone last year had told me that we would be 0-7 right now, I would have laughed in their face and bet all my money against that person. (or I would have hit them, depending on my mood that day- I can be feisty when it comes to my teams)

This season has been hard on me. I KNOW its been hard on our players and our coaches, which is why its very hard on me. I HATE watching Josh come home and scratch his head to try and figure out what he is doing wrong. I hate that he takes it so hard, buy then as someone pointed out- "its a good thing he is taking it hard- we'd be worried if he wasn't"... SO true, but its great for THEM to not have to watch it day in and day out, while I am at home try to help him sort out his feelings and thoughts. He likes to talk it out and I basically listen and try to give my two cents every now and then. Last night I was especially proud of myself- as he had a revelation- so did I:) ha

Anyhow, so as I was saying, I never thought that our team would be 0-7. I don't think I over-estimated our team, because make no mistake, We are doing a LOT of things right and for basically having a JV team playing Varsities, (GOOD Varsities), we are doing a hell of a job. But I think maybe I under-estimated the teams that we are playing. I knew CP and LT would be good, but I can honestly say that if someone had said that Vista Ridge would be 6-2, I would have laughed at that. (although, I can say that I am VERY happy for them. I truly am and I am hoping that next year someone will be saying the same about us)

I know we have the potential to be an amazing team and I think next year, the table is going to flip and I think we will be able to compete solidly with CP and LT. I have no doubt about it. And the year after THAT- they better all watch out for us.Currently we have 13 SOPHOMORE starters on our team. Providing no injuries or move-aways- we will have 13 starters for 3 years. (counting this season).
Coaches say that for every Sophomore you have on your Varsity, that you will lose 1 game. (that's NOT a knock, but your talking about a 15 year old playing against a 17/18 year old, well how about thirteen, 15 year olds going against twenty- two 17 or 18 year olds! That's kind of unfair if you think about it!)

This year I think we have done some great things, and we have done a LOT of things right. We are growing and we are getting where we need to be. Our kids are fighters. Those guys fight- every day and we deserve a win.
Do I think we can go out and beat Lake Travis- honestly... maybe.
Let me just tell you about MY Senior year and maybe I will make you a believer too

(Sorry, Coach Aboussie, I know I am bringing up bad memories for you:)

My Senior Year, the 1998 Wichita Falls Rider Raiders.
A little background, my previous 3 years of High School, we were the smallest school in 5a.
(kind of like the Rouse Raiders being one of the smallest in 4a right now)
We had great athletes in those 3 years, several of them went on to play at the college level- with full rides and I have 4 of those kids in the 3 years went on to play in the NFL and Canadian Football Leagues. So we had good athletes, but in those 3 years we won a total of 10 games in those years- and 6 of those games were non-district games.

In realignment of 1998 when I was still a junior, our smallest 5a school, missed the 5a mark by 9 kids. Because of those 9 missing kids, we were able to move down to 4a. This was HUGE for us and very exciting.

We thought we were going to run the table in 4a.
But to our disappointment, we won 2 games all year. Those two games were against the Burkburnett Bulldogs- who were 0-8 that year. The final game was against the Wichita Falls High School Coyotes (who Coach Aboussie was an all district running back for:)

WFHS and Rider, have a LONG history. Sadly, but true, the coach could be in the hot seat and be o-fer all year, but you if you win that game, you are as good as gold that next day and your job is saved. Those school's have an amazing tradition, its awesome as a player and as a fan, but its a coaches nightmare and one that I THOROUGHLY enjoyed as student and even as an alumni, but when i became a coaches wife at "the other school" I HATED IT. I realized just how unhealthy it was.

Anyhow, back to the story- that's a completely different blog!

So, in district, WFHS was (2-3) and Rider was (1-3) going into our game against each other. At that time 3 teams went to the playoffs, so here was the scenario in which it could have played out:

A Coyote Win would have put them automatically into the playoffs

A RIDER Win would have caused a tie, and at the end of the game would cause a coin flip to see who would go into the playoffs.

A third scenario was if Rider beat WFHS by a certain number of points and it also went on penetrations and all this other stuff that I couldn't begin to tell you. (Grandpa, feel free to comment as I am certain you know exactly what it was)

Anyhow, the game was rainy and it was miserable, all I remember is standing there in tears because I knew this was my last game to watch as a Rider Raider student. At halftime we were trailing by 3 points. I just KNEW we could win, and much like I do now, I was worried, but hopeful. I never worry until 4th quarter (then and now), but in your final game of your senior year, I was on pins and needles (I can't imagine how the players felt!)
We had a great passing game and Coyotes secondary couldn't cover us. Plus it was so slippery from all the rain. I think there may have been 9 minutes left in the fourth, but Our QB: Justin Ozuna, threw a pass to Shane Szymanski and we scored making the score 21-10.
Thinking it was all good and I was a bit more relaxed, then out of NOWHERE- the Coyote QB passed off to, I think, Joseph Aboussie who scored on us, then they went for 2, making the score 21-18.
With 2 minutes and maybe 10 seconds left, they missed their on-side kick, and we ran the clock as much as we could. But not enough, and they got the ball back. There was 45 seconds left and they were in field goal range. With luck or the Lord on our side, their 30 yard field goal kicker- who NEVER misses, did in fact miss and the game was ours. I have never been more excited to win a game.

But, luck and the Lord were STILL with us, because our team won the coin toss and we made it to the playoffs. I have never been so excited and I can honestly say that of almost everything that happened my Senior year, winning that coin toss is something I will NEVER forget.

Here is why i think we COULD beat Lake Travis.

The 1998 Rider Raiders were a good team. We had some good kids, but there was a LOT of things going on in that season that were obstacles. Those guys had a LOT to over-come and its amazing to me how that coaching staff was even able to keep the team together. I will write about this sometime, but not now. We had good athletes, but not many that went on to play post high school, so our guys were at best- average. But never the less, we won that coin toss.

Not only did we win the coin toss, but our 2-3 team went on and
beat Weatherford in triple over time in the bi-district championship (43-35). Weatherford was 6-4 going into the game.
We beat Cleborne in the Region I Semifinals (14-7). Cleborne was 8-3 going into the game before we put a stop to their season.
THEN the mother of all mothers.
Our Cinderella team drove to Lubbock to play super defensive tough Plainview in the Region I-Division I Finals.
Plainview was 10-1 going into the game, and we played with them right the entire game.
Plainview beat us 35-28, but we were very much alive until the last minute of the game.
I have NEVER been so incredibly heartbroken in my life.

Is it sad that I remember all of that? Nothing was more exciting to me than that year. Until I became a coaches wife and get to witness this EVERY YEAR. Except now, the kids that i am cheering for, are not my peers or my friends. I am cheering for kids and coaches and I NOW know what all goes into a football game, its not something that happens in the 48 minutes on the field.

Our team can accomplish whatever they put their minds to. All it takes is us believing in each other. Look at my team my senior year. We were 2-8.... 2-8. That is 2 wins and 8 LOSSES.
And we finished at 4-9.

The 1998 Rider Raiders didn't give up and I don't believe our Rouse Raiders will either.

Raiders vs. Lake Travis

Coming Soon

Friday, October 15, 2010

Rouse vs. Dripping Springs

Raiders lose to Dripping Springs

Raiders vs. Timberwolves

I am sorry I have been so slow at updates. I truly am. I know its bad timing, but I have been very busy and honestly, its hard to write each week. Hard emotionally really.

This game was especially hard for me to write about. SO many emotions going on in my mind.
I love Cedar Park, I always have and I always will. Cedar Park will never be an enemy and this game was proof of why I love that staff and their wives so much. Even now, as I am writing this, I am teary.

I won't write much about the game itself. One, because it was 2 weeks ago, but two, because its pretty self-explanatory. We lost. They are a GREAT team and very well coached and very disciplined.

Contrary to what I have read on facebook (by students- not by parents), Cedar Park did not run the score up on us. Not even remotely. They rotated their kids the entire game. We did make several mistakes, but all in all, they were just better.

I get chills thinking about it, but when our guys went down with his injury, and the 2 teams prayed together, I was blown away. I don't think I have ever, ever seen such a thing in my life from 2 teams. I am sure its happened, but rarely. Not together in the middle of the field.
Another thing that is rare is when a player goes down and BOTH Head Coaches are looking over him. THAT is rare. And shows so much class.

The prayer after the game was started because a player from Cedar Park wanted the two teams to pray together as a team and with the two staffs. That's rare.

For ME, watching Two amazing teams with so much class on their knees praying together made the pain of the loss go away entirely. That image will forever be engraved in my mind.

Rouse finding lesson in losses