“Refugio is the best cotton pickin’ community in the United States,” said coach Jason Herring. “How ‘bout them Cats! What a ride it’s been!”
The football program in the seventh grade and eighth grade earned perfect 8-0 seasons and the junior varsity tallied a perfect 10-0 season, along with the varsity Bobcats earning a perfect 15-0 state championship.
As a reward, the state championship ring which will be presented to each high school Bobcat. The ring will be studded with 41 stones – to represent each Bobcat win this season.
“Every single (high school) kid that traveled with us will get one,” Herring said. “I’m real proud of that.”
Herring said he loved the support that comes from the community, school board, faculty and fans.
“To go on the field and turn around and see 11,000 people in the Victoria stadium when our community has only about 2,600 people is awesome,” Herring said. “Thank you for these kids!”
With tears welling in his eyes, he paid a final tribute.
“I made a promise to the community and to two people – Jack Sportsman and Alfred Marshall – that I’d bring a championship home to them. I want to say – here it is, baby!”
Mayor Ray Jaso and the city council declared the week of Jan. 6 through 12 as Refugio Bobcat Week.
Jaso presented Herring with the key to the city and State Congresswoman Jeannie Morrison issued a state proclamation to the team and commended them for holding the state record for most points scored in a season, 891, which is 12 shy of the national record.
“One thing I’m most proud of is Coach Herring for conducting himself with dignity and class,” said Jack Gaskins, RISD superintendent. “Three different coaches called to apologize for the way they behaved and what they said.”
Before the state championship, Herring was criticized for allowing the Bobcats to play at 100 percent for three quarters. In the process, Bobcat scores ran high, right up to the championship game, which the Cats won 36-35 against Cisco.