IOWA PARK, TX (KAUZ) - Quanah's Mayson Leija played for Jason Sims from 7th grade through his junior year, before the coach left to lead his home town Childress Bobcats.
Now, they're reunited on the West All-Star team for this year's 79th Annual Oil Bowl Classic. Leija, who will play quarterback, slotback, defensive back and serve as a punter for the team, said the familiarity he gained with Sims's offensive system is paying off.
"It's Coach Sims's 'Tony Franklin System,' that's what it feels like to me," Leija said Wednesday. "That's what I ran all through junior high, through high school except my senior year. It's awesome to be able to do it again. I know everything [Sims] does, so it's going to be like I never missed a beat, I guess."
Leija also said the West squad is jelling together quickly.
"Oh, it's awesome," he said. "Being able to play football is a great, great experience. We've got some cool kids over here, everybody acts like they've known everybody forever. It's a great experience."
This week's upper-90s temperatures, coupled with high humidity, have led to conditions somewhere between uncomfortable and dangerous for practice this week.
Coaches are making sure to keep their players, and themselves, adequately hydrated as they practice on the hot FieldTurf at Iowa Park and City View High School's fields.
"I think it's something we've really got to watch," said Holliday's Frank Johnson, serving as defensive coordinator for the West. "It's humid and hot. Some of these kids played in the Green Belt Bowl, or the FCA All-Star game last week, so they're in decent shape. But some of us haven't done a thing since school's out. We probably need to watch our fluid intake."