College football season is over, but for more than 60 young men in Kilgore today, it was game time in an effort to make a college football squad. From all over Texas, young men came out hoping for a career in college football came. Many with their cleats slung over their shoulders.
"This has been my dream since I was a baby, I've been playing since I was 4 and whatever they want me at whatever position they want me to play I'll do it for them," said former West Rusk football player Eric Contreras. For 63 young men, it was a one day try out. One day to prove themselves and earn a scholarship, or a walk on position on the Kilgore Rangers 2008 squad.
"Well, I probably won't play quarterback in college, but I'll probably be a receiver something like that, I hope I impress the coaches," said Palestine high school quarterback Graylon Crawford.
"One thing we try to do is try to find that diamond in the ruff," said Kilgore College Head Football Coach, J.J. Eckert. "I think that's the one thing that really helps us in theses situations as far as having a chance to, maybe we didn't get to see him on film, or something of that nature, but we get him here have a chance to do a lot of testing put him through some drill work and find somebody we're looking for at Kilgore college."
"I've worked hard to do this and come out here with a game face," said Contreras. Some displayed blazing speed tested in the 40 yard dash, agility drills and ability to take instruction. Its a chance at a dream, and for the coaching staff, looking for the next phenomenon.
"We're wanting to find out maybe somebody who sat out the fall, a part time student somewhere who wants to have a second chance," said Eckert. For some there will be other days of football, for others it will be their last try.
The rangers will hold more open tryout camps around East Texas, to be announced at a later date.