TYLER, Texas (KETK) – The Chapel Hill Bulldogs aren’t shy in expressing how tremendous their off-season has been.
Taking advantage of every opportunity afforded to them (by the pandemic and the UIL), the Bulldogs have grown up exponentially entering their second-year under head coach Jeff Riordan.
They also have a new quarterback in Cameron Ford, that grew up in the Chapel Hill school district. He transfers back to be a Bulldog for his senior season.
“It means a lot to me to be back, and represent the colors I grew up in. They welcomed me back with open arms just like a family. We’re gonna have fun. We’re gonna win, and we’re gonna bring back the winning tradition at Chapel Hill,” said Ford.
The lefty Ford left C-Hill midway through his freshman year, and was the starter for the Tyler Lions much of last season.
Ford threw for 1,300 yards and six touchdown passes, while also rushing for 540 yards, and six more scores in 2019 helping CUJO reach the postseason.
“It’s good to have him back. We’ve been trying to get him here. You know he’s my cousin. We just grew up up together and all,” said Bulldogs senior receiver and cornerback Amorian Ford.
“He’s going crazy. It’s gonna be a stupid year. He already got everything down. He’s just a mobile quarterback, and the way he just moves, it’s amazing to watch,” added Amorian Ford.
“Coming into this year, I’m well more prepared. I got more knowledge. I just picked up on a lot of things that I learned from John Tyler coming to Chapel Hill. I feel a lot more poised and fresh in the huddle because they trust me a lot, teaching the young guys, showing them what to do, and what not to do,” said Cameron Ford.
“Seeing where he was June 8th to August 8th is almost a miracle I mean it’s his fundamentals are tight now. He’s got more zip on his ball, he’s more accurate. He’s picked up the offense really really quick. It was very similar. And as he improves, our offense improves,” said Riordan.
That improvement should be more visible in 2020, with the development of a number of other weapons offensively, including talented, and athletic sophomore receiver Tyson Berry.
“He’s very explosive. He can get open when needed. I can trust him a lot. If I need him to be somewhere, he’ll be somewhere,” said Cameron Ford.
“When we were quarantined they were getting together and throwing and catching, and finding places to go throw and catch. You know I think that’s gonna pay dividends in the season, just overall chemistry that they are building together,” said Riordan.
And having earned plenty of experience as a freshman on the gridiron, and as the starting point guard for Chapel Hill’s regional semifinalist basketball team, Berry is already becoming a leader.
“He’s stepping up in his role being an underclassman. And he’s just coming up, and we just following what he say,” said Amorian Ford.
“He’s a good leader, but he’s still got more stuff to learn. He’s gonna progress over the years,” said Cameron Ford.
The bulldogs still have to navigate through the vaunted, but new look, District of Doom. But with eight starters returning defensively, there is a confidence level, Riordan says, that wasn’t there before.
“We just fight. We got the mindset that we know we can beat everybody that we come across. So we know that there’s like we have no challenge. Only thing that can beat us is us. And we don’t plan on that happening at all,” said Amorian Ford.
Chapel Hill scrimmages Pittsburg at home Thursday at 7:00 p.m.
The Bulldogs open the regular season by hosting Splendora Friday Aug. 28.
Watch the video to see the story.
Chapel Hill 2020 Varsity football schedule
Date Time Opponent Site
Aug 20 7:00pm Pittsburg (Scrimmage) Home
Aug 28 7:00pm Splendora Home
Sept 4 7:30pm Kaufman Home
Sept 11 7:30pm Terrell Away
Sept 18 7:30pm Center Away
Sept 25 7:30pm Athens* Away
Oct 2 7:30pm Lindale* Home
Oct 9 7:30pm Palestine* Away
Oct 16 7:30pm Kilgore* Home
Oct 23 7:30pm Mabank* Away
Oct 30 Bye
Nov 6 7:30pm Henderson* Home
*Denotes District Game