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The Rotary Club of San Marcos speaker Wednesday was Brad Wright, Head Football Coach, at Texas State University. The meeting was led David Bandy at the Price Senior Center in San Marcos.Brad Wright addressed the group about the upcoming 2008 Bobcat football season and changes within the football program. Wright enters his second season as the head coach at Texas State University, the school from which he graduated in 1981, and from where he launched his coaching career.

Last season as head coach, Wright’s offensive attack produced a 2,000-yard passer, 1,000-yard rusher and a 1,000-yard receiver in the same season. The Bobcats also posted one of the school’s top eight attendance averages for the fourth straight year.

Wright was named head coach in the spring of 2007 after serving the three previous seasons as an assistant head coach, running back coach and special team’s coordinator. During that span, the Pearsall native played a significant roll in the resurgence of Texas State’s football program.

Prior to Wright returning to his alma mater, the Bobcats suffered 15 losing records in the 19 years of playing football as a member of the NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision. But in his three years as an assistant head coach, Texas State posted a 21-15 record, won it’s first-ever Southland Conference championship in 2005 and advanced to the semifinals of the NCAA Division I football playoffs.

Wright’s association with winning at Texas State dates back to the late 1970s when he walked on to the Bobcat football program and went on to have a career in which he played on both sides of the ball for legendary coaches Bill Miller and Jim Wacker.

His coaching career began as a student assistant coach for Wacker’s 1981 NCAA Division II national championship team.

Wright told the group that many rules were enacted upon his arrival like mandatory attendance for football players, several players quit during this time but the program is stronger because of it.

Wright changed the defense during the second half of the 2007 campaign; the Bobcats went 3-2 during that span. He expects more discipline from his players but concedes that the McNeese State Cowboys are the team to beat again in the Southland Conference.

He said, “We have demanding practices and we have increased time in the weight room.”

He also told the group about a better defense in 2008 and increased experience on the team from last season. “There is a feeling of excitement this year we didn’t have last season.”

In Rotary News, they recognized members with August birthdays which are August 8 Carl Allen, August 10 Marion Johnson, August 10 Chad Neff, August 12 Ronald Oswalt, August 24 Barbara Castleberry, August 24 Ted Riojas, and August 29 Ronda Reagan.

$1,700 has been contributed to date for the EarlyAct First Knights of the Guild Program for Crockett Elementary.

The group also installed two new members Vaughn Thayer, a returning Rotarian proposed for re-admittance by Wendell Hethccock and Ronald Oswalt, Sales proposed by Tracy Herman.

The Featured Rotarian of the Week was Dr. Don Knotts. Knotts and wife Rose have two children, Patti and Rusty. They also have two grandchildren, Justin and Jacob. Don currently owns a ranch (R and D Group) in Kimble County, which is located near Junction. He is also a retired dean of Agriculture & Human Services at Tarleton State University.

Don is president of Kimble and Edwards County Farm Bureau. He is also superintendent of the Houston Livestock Show (Swine Show), which is one of the largest shows in the world.

Don originally became a Rotarian in 1967-88 then again in 2001-present. He is a Wildcat as he graduated from Sulphur Springs high school in 1958. He graduated from Sam Houston where he received both a Bachelor’s Degree (1961) and Master’s Degree (1962). He then attended Texas A&M University where he received his PhD in 1971.

His greatest accomplishment is becoming Dean Emeritus from the College of Agriculture & Human Services at Tarleton State University. He enjoys wildlife management and his most memorable event was being George Strait’s major advisor when he attended college.

Did you know that George Strait is certified to be an agriculture teacher? He says he used to enjoy watching football before they became “over-paid cry babies”.

From STAFF REPORTS

CLICK ON THE PLAY BUTTON TO CAPTURE HIGHLIGHTS OF THE BRAD WRIGHT AND ROTARY MEETING FROM NEWSTREAMZ.COM

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The Rotarians welcome back Vaughn Thayer to the fold of the group.

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Brad Wright – Texas State Head Football Coach speaks x and o’s with the group.

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Diane Riojas was awarded a special gift fron newstreamz.com for her committment to Rotary.

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Don Knotts was recognized for perfect attendance at the meeting.

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The front table is the place to be at all Rotary meetings.

Photos courtesy of Diane Riojas, and Sammy Falletta

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