Preseason report: Katy Cinco Ranch

Providing our fans with the best high school and recruiting news is the aim of the TexasPrepInsider organization. Today, we bring you a brief spring report for the Katy Cinco Ranch team. We caught up with coach Don Clayton for an update.

For many years, the rivalries within Katy ISD have grown steadily over the years. The one that earns the most attention and is one of the more spotlighted battles is that between Cinco Ranch and Katy.

And while the success at Katy has been a constant for decades now, the work going on off Highway 99 is worthy of mention as well.

But for coach Don Clayton and staff, they feel as though it is time for the Cougars to elevate to the next level.

"We feel like any program that wants to considered an outstanding program has to get over that hump and right now where are at that hump phase," Clayton said. "Three years ago we had a great year, followed by a decent year, and last year was outstanding. This year needs to one where we break the cycle. 

"We need to step up and build on what we did last year. We really feel like we have a similar quality team as last year."

So much to the point where Clayton is confident that this team can match or surpass what the 2008 team accomplished. And it seems like he has the crew to do it on both sides of the ball.

"Running back KC Nlemchi took hold of the position and did well this off season," Clayton said. "We also feel like we have a pretty good group of receivers who catch the ball well, and with Zach Myers at quarterback with his experience, we got to see what we needed to on the offensive side of the ball. Of course, we were looking for several offensive linemen to go along with Richard Glover and James Pierce and we feel like we found three more quality guys to go with them plus some depth. So we feel OK with that."

Clayton followed up with his thoughts on the Cougar defense.

"Defensively, we were very strong at linebacker (with James Radcliffe and Trevor Holt), but needed one more and felt like underclassman Jeff Williams came in and did a good job," Clayton said. "Defensive line is still a challenge for us, and not because there are not good kids vying for spots, but the quality we lost was so good."

In the secondary, the Cougars have experience in Zach Velliquette and Kyle Weatherford, but the coaching staff still wants to solidify the other secondary spots. 

So as the district defending Cougars line up for 2009, there is a lot of confidence building around this team.

"Some of these guys who are on the field may be as good as what we have had in the past, but they are not tested yet so we need to clear that hurdle early in the fall," Clayton said. "And sure, we will do some things different with them with a different style of play, but overall we feel like the kids we have and ability to get us over that hump and make some things happen."

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