HS FB preview: Lubbock-Cooper Pirates - FOX34 Lubbock

HS FB preview: Lubbock-Cooper Pirates

LUBBOCK, Texas -


Max Kattwinkel retired as the head ball coach after he led the Pirates deep into the playoffs during the 2018 season. Chip Darden was promoted from offensive coordinator and has two key players back on both sides of the ball.

Senior running back, Isaiah Johnson, had a monster season last year. He tallied 1,300 rushing yards and 25 touchdowns. His season landed him several division one offers. He verbally committed to Seth Littrell and the University of North Texas in June.

"It's the coaching staff. They just bring something like it's family," Johnson explained. "They'll text you every day. Check up on you and I really like that and I'm the one running back they said they're bringing in for 2020 so it just means a lot."

Lubbock-Cooper head coach, Chip Darden, called the running back one of the most physical football players he's been around, but an even better person.

"Kind of what we're focused on him this year is he was voted captain and so we kind of want him to take that step leadership wise and make sure he's being a good leader," Darden said. "He's quiet by nature and that's OK, you can still be a good leader. Sometimes be a vocal leader when needed and take that next step."

On defense, sophomore linebacker Kobie McKinzie is back after a breakout freshman year. He got noticed by several division one schools. He verbally committed to Texas Tech in February. 

"Jarrett Culver I mean, we were there watching him and Coach Yost was like you can make this a football story also, you can be a hometown hero," McKinzie described.

According to 247 Sports, the sophomore is ranked as the number one recruit for outside linebackers for the class of 2022. He's also the number two recruit in Texas for his class.

"I always worked my butt of because I always knew it was coming," the OLB said. "You don't want fold under that. You want to be humble and never be satisfied with anything. Just keep working."

According to Darden, "He's a real mature kid for 16 years old and so I think that helps him a lot. But for him I just think it's about playing ball and he knows that. That all that stuff is fun and he enjoys it and he should but now it's time to strap it up, now it's time to ball and all that other stuff takes care of itself."

The Pirates start the season hosting Andrews on Friday, August 30th.

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