By Abigail Carrillo
Former National Football League (NFL) player Bucky Brooks brings plenty of experience to our school’s football program as the varsity football team’s new head coach.
William Eldridge Brooks began playing football at only eight years old. After a successful football career at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Brooks was drafted to the Buffalo Bills in the 1994 draft.
“I’ve loved the sport [football] from day one and I was obsessed with becoming a great player. I had a great desire to be a part of a championship team because I’m a competitor and I love winning. That said, I also enjoy the camaraderie and discipline that comes with playing football,” Brooks said.
After being drafted, Brooks went onto play for several NFL teams including the Buffalo Bills, Green Bay Packers, Jacksonville Jaguars, Kansas City Chiefs, and the Oakland Raiders.
Brooks’ has played for some great coaches and with a widespread of athletes. The coaches he has played for have been impressive themselves such as Earl Smith, a high school coach with over 250 wins, and Mack Brown a college football hall of fame recipient.
“I’ve learned lessons on how to build a successful team from some of the best coaches to ever do it. My job is to take those lessons and apply them within the GHC program. We have a great group of kids who want to compete at the highest level, we have to show them what it takes to win,” Brooks said.
After Brooks’ NFL career as a defensive back; he went on to work as a professional scout, a sports analyst for the NFL Network and a co-host of the successful podcast, “Move the Sticks.”
Now, as the head coach for GHC, Brooks has changed the organization of the team and the way that they play. The team now deals with tactical plays and how to work better as a team, rather than solely working on one position. They also train throughout the week with conditioning days that work on their stamina and resistance.
“At first, it was really intimidating to hear that our new coach was coming from the NFL. But now that we have gotten to learn and train with Coach Brooks, we don’t see him as a ‘celebrity’, we see him as our coach and mentor,” varsity player Brandon Ojeda said.
The team is hopeful that his new program will be a winning one.
“I’m expecting this year to be a great year for our program with a new standard and a strong foundation for the years to come. I don’t know how our season is going to turn out, but everyone is working hard for the same goal which is to win the championship and make the Granada football program more desirable for future athletes,” senior and running back Chanchol Karsaesin said.
With all the new changes taking place, GHC is hoping to utilize Coach Brooks’ experience and background in professional football, to reach their goal of making the playoffs and maybe even winning the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) Championships. But more importantly, Coach Brooks main goal is to shape the team into selfless players committed to the team, in which successful outcomes will result.
“We will establish a culture for the program this season. We will create a standard of performance on and off the field that will stretch from our freshman to our seniors. We will focus each day on being better in those areas while working diligently on the fundamentals. It comes down to effort and execution in big games. We have to focus on mastering the small things and the positive results will happen,” Brooks said.
Come out and cheer on Coach Brooks and his team at their next home game against Taft on October 4th.