Merkel football is under new leadership with Britt Hart. The new Badger head coach comes from Falls City where he had a winning season in each of his five years with the team. Hart took the job with Merkel just before the pandemic and is seeing his athletes for the first time this week with summer workouts underway. Hart is thankful to finally prepare with his team in person.
Britt Hart said, “The pandemic kind of put a damper on some things, but the turnout ‘s been great. We’ve been averaging about 50 kids in the morning, then we have about 15-16 kids that work in the afternoon that I provide a 6:00 workout for. Just having the coaches up here and leading the kids every single day has been a sigh of relief more than anything.”
Being a Big Country native, Hart found the Merkel head coaching job appealing having family in the area and being able to return to a place he once called home.
Hart said, “I’m originally from the Big Country area, I’ve got a lot of family in the Bangs area, in the Abilene area and the Cross Plains area. It’s been really good, my wife is originally from Stephenville, so being close to her family has been a plus as well.”
Hart is teaching the Badgers a new offense and with the pandemic shutting down the offseason and spring football, learning is not easy during the summer. However, Hart is impressed with how quickly his team is picking up on the new play calls.
Hart said, “It’s just gonna take awhile for them to kind of learn, I think we’re ahead of schedule in the first three days than I thought we would be. We got some really good skill kids, we gotta develop some linemen.”
Merkel Senior Jackson Myers said “I think it’ll be better than last year hopefully. Can’t really get any worse, but I mean I trust him so far. Everything he’s done, I’ve liked.”