Junior quarterback Landry Turner only moved to Graham this spring, but he's already fitting in.
"Everybody's kinda taken me in, like I've been a part of the team since I was born," Turner said.
"He's been fitting in like he's been here for a while," agreed senior Landon Gonzales. "You know, everything, like campfires we do, our traditions."
The transfer from Springtown started for the Porcupines since midway through his freshman year, winning a playoff game against Hirschi last winter.
Now he's being asked to fill the shoes of standout quarterback Ben Davis, who led Graham to back-to-back state semifinals appearances the past two seasons.
Turner moved to Graham back in February, which gave him a head start.
"It's an advantage for us for him to be able to have gone through the spring, and to learn our plays," said Head Coach Kenny Davidson. "He was able to work out, work in the weight room, work on the field during the period. He was able to lead us in 7-on-7."
Turner led the Steers to the Division II championship at the State 7-on-7 Tournament, their second in a row.
Graham also has to replace departed running back Dillon Gonzales. He accounted for 65 touchdowns between the ground and the air over the past two seasons.
"This year we've got Justin Escalon, Nick Martin and Hagen Hughes to fill in," Davidson said. "So it's going to be running back by committee."
Defensively, the Steers should be strong yet again, with two Division-I commitments, in safety Mike Freeze (TCU) and defensive end Dustin McWhorter (Texas State).
"It's difficult going up against them D-linemen," said Turner, who gets to see them every day in practice. "I mean, with (Defensive End Colton) Langley, and all those guys, I mean it's very difficult going against our defense."
However, the defense did suffer a setback early in training camp when Freeze went down with a shoulder injury. Coach Davidson didn't want to talk about the details or how soon Freeze may be back, but said the team will step up.
"Well, it's hard to lose a talented player," he said. "At the same time, you've got to move on. It's part of the game, and it's unfortunate. And you know, we've just got to have other members fill in."
No matter what, the Steers are excited to get the season underway Friday!
"The whole town's really expecting a lot of us," Gonzales said. "We expect a lot of each other, so we've got each other. It's here."
The Steers will have a great game to start the season, hosting former district rival Vernon Friday night at 7:30 at Newton Field!
Graham Steers 2014 Schedule
Aug. 29 vs Vernon, 7:30
Sep. 5 at Brownwood, 7:30
Sep. 12 at Abilene Wylie, 7:30
Sep. 19 vs Argyle, 7:30
Sep. 26 vs Big Spring, 7:30
Oct. 3 BYE
Oct. 10 at Gainesville*, 7:30
Oct. 17 at Burkburnett*, 7:30
Oct. 24 vs Mineral Wells*, 7:30
Oct. 31 at Hirschi*, 7:30
Nov. 7 vs Decatur*, 7:30