"The kids expect to play a big game every week," Hebron head coach Brian Brazil said. "They play at a high level so we don't get bumped off track. They have a lot of respect for each other, the coaches and the school.
One thing you notice about Hebron is offensive balance. Check out the numbers: 1,967 yards rushing and 1,242 yards passing for an average of 537 yards per game and 52 points per contest.
"Balance is something we have stressed, and the kids have bought into it," Brazil said. "Our offensive line has played excellent this year. I can remember one run in particular against McKinney North where we had the whole offense down field blocking on a 60-yard touchdown run. That shows a lot of pride in your job."
Hebron is no slouch on the defensive side either. They have only allowed opposing offenses an average of 162 yards per game. Brazil lays all the credit for Hebron's success on D to one man.
"Coach McBride is the driving force behind our defense. The kids love playing for him."
One the field, the defense is led by DT/DE Alex Odiari who has been getting numerous D-I offers and looks so far this season.
"Odiari is a special player," Brazil commented. "When it's game time he is ready to play. He's like an actor and the field is his stage. He's a big part of our success."
Other players that have the Hebron head man fired up are senior (and Texas Tech commit) Phillip Jones, OLB Brian Aubuchon, DT Brandon Moore and safeties Desmond Murff and Steven Harris, who also have carried the load at the wideout positions for the Hawks.
On the offensive side Brazil has some playmakers. Leading that group is RB Derke Robinson. Robinson, a Texas Hot 100 candidate next season, who has rushed for 936 yards on 97 carries and has scored 18 touchdowns this season. Derke has very good speed (4.6), but what Brazil likes about him is his "vision and his feet." He said Robinson is "such a natural runner. He's not going to win every 100 meter race but he has such a great nose for the goaline, he's a special player." His running mate is Demarcus Houston who has 487 yards rushing and 5 touchdowns. Quarterback Justin Pirtchuca is having a nice year for Hebron and Brazil say's he is a great leader. Pirtchuca is 75-121 for 1,119 yards and has thrown 12 TDs against 3 INTs.
What about this weeks battle with area No. 11 and conference co-leader McKinney Lions?
"This is going to be a tough game," Brazil told Scout.com. "McKinney will be the toughest team we have faced this season. They do alot of things well. The thing I noticed about watching them is they don't beat themselves. They are well coached. They play great special teams. The kids they have over there play hard. On offense, they attack you on the ground with a sound running game and on defense they have a great D-line like we have over here. That #46 kid (DT Luke Swadley) is a good one. We have to block him. And, they got that (Lorenzo) Jones kid who runs well. This is going to be a good test for us.
By all accounts it looks like Hebron is in pretty good shape. With a solid O and D, the Hawks look like the team to beat this year in 4A.