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Gobbler Fan
11-07-2007, 07:24 AM
Cuero honors 1987 state championship team
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BY MIKE FORMAN - ADVOCATE SPORTS WRITER
November 07, 2007 - Posted at 12:00 a.m.

CUERO - Cory Pargmann might not be able to remember what he ate for breakfast but he will never forget coming to the sideline on a cold, drizzly December night at Memorial Stadium in Austin.

"I looked up at the scoreboard," Pargmann recalled, "and I yelled to Jason Gonzales, 'In 6 minutes we're going to be state champions.'"

Pargmann's recollection of what took place during the 1987 Class 3A state final has faded some with time but not his appreciation for what the team accomplished by winning the school's third and last state football championship with a 14-6 victory over McGregor.

"In our eyes, we had it won before we even stepped on the field," said Pargmann, who started at linebacker and tackle.

Pargmann and his teammates will have the chance to share memories of the state championship season when they are honored during Cuero's District 29-3A game against Goliad on Friday at Gobbler Stadium.

The Gobblers had every reason to believe 1987 would be their year. Cuero had reached the state final in 1985 and '86 only to return home disappointed.

"We had some unfinished business to take care of," said Kirk Laging, who started at guard. "We took the initiative to get the job done. It's just like anything else in life. You don't give up. You lick your wounds and get it done."

The Gobblers rolled to the title in impressive fashion. Cuero went 16-0, outscored the opposition 695-126 and had a 6,540 to 1,222 edge in total yardage. Running back Robert Strait rushed for 3,515 yards and set what was then a national record with 52 rushing touchdowns.

"That team was very unique," said Pat Blessing, the head coach of the 1987 team, who is now retired and living in Hobbs, N.M. "I really believe any coach could have won a state championship with that team. As long as you didn't mistreat them and you hugged them and showed them you loved them they would respond. That team really had a love for each other."

Many of the players were members of the same youth teams and played football together from the seventh grade to the varsity. The bond they formed as teammates extended beyond racial and economic lines.

"It was just the camaraderie we had," said quarterback Wayne Mathis, who remembers teammates coming to his house on Thursday nights to eat hamburgers prepared by his mother, Eula. "We grew up together and we really felt like we would play for a championship. I think that's why we had so much success. We depended on each other. We were not going to let each other down."

Mathis did his part by throwing touchdown passes of 60 and 28 yards to wide receiver Carlos Taylor in the state championship game. Mathis, Taylor and his brother Trooper, Strait, Pargmann, Rodney Pedraza and Vic Rhodes played on all three teams that reached the state final.

"We had been there the last two years and everybody knew what we wanted," said Pedraza, who played fullback and linebacker. "We knew what we had to do to get it done and we weren't going to let anything stand in our way."

"We took care of business," Carlos Taylor added. "We had no crybabies on that team. We had played together for so long that we would just go out do whatever it took to get it done."

The players worked hard in practice but they also enjoyed what they were doing. Blessing's motto was, "Let's score half-a-hundred and have fun."

"The most important thing is we had fun playing football," Laging said. "You've got to enjoy what you're doing. We worked hard in practice but we had fun playing the games."

It was easy for the 1987 team to enjoy most of its wins as it won by 19 points or more until it reached the semifinals.

"We just worked, stayed focused and did the things we needed to win on Friday," Mathis said.

Cuero also won state titles in 1973 and '74 and reached the state final in 1970, '75, 1985, '86, 1993, '98 and 2004. Carlos Taylor and Pargmann have sons who played on the 2004 team and assistants Victor Mathis and John Fuqua were coaching in Cuero in 1985 and remain on the staff.

The 1987 players expect arguments about which Cuero team was the best to resume this weekend but they state an impressive case.

"We played pretty good defense and we had Wayne Mathis, Robert Strait and Rodney Pedraza in the backfield," Blessing said. "And if Robert hadn't been there, I have no doubt Trooper Taylor would have been an all-state running back. We had enough depth and enough talent with guys like Carlos Taylor. Those were great kids, they were good football players and good athletes. We had good linemen and great team speed. I think if you took the average speed of everybody who started - I mean even big Adam Arroyo who started on the line ran a 5-flat 40(-yard dash) - our team was a 4.8. I don't care if it's 1987 or 2007, speed wins."
Mike Forman is a sports writer for the Victoria Advocate. Contact him at 361-580-6588 or mforman@vicad.com.

44INAROW
11-07-2007, 11:11 AM
Originally posted by Gobbler Fan
Cuero honors 1987 state championship team
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- I mean even big Adam Arroyo who started on the line ran a 5-flat 40(-yard dash) - our team was a 4.8. I don't care if it's 1987 or 2007, speed wins."


guess he'll be otherwise obligated Friday night and won't be at the Cuero vs Goliad game Friday night.. sure would like to see a foot race between AA and RP :D

Gobbla2001
11-07-2007, 12:36 PM
Nice picture in The Advocate of those 7 players who play in the 85, 86 and 87 championships

http://media.victoriaadvocate.com/smedia/2007/11/07/02/334-mf_87cuero_11070701.highlight.prod_affiliate.31.jp g

averaged 409 yards per game and gave up 76 yards per game... niiice... should talk to our '07 team and get 'em hyped... make 'em feel tha lovvvve :inlove:

AAA87
11-07-2007, 01:02 PM
I think I can still run atleast a 7.0 forty....2 seconds in twenty years not too shabby.....that picture always rubbed me a bit.....i was on all three teams i just didnt play cause i was on crutches in '85, hurt knee during practice of Gonzales game week... but I still have all three medals so it was ok......

would be fun...we are trying to put something together for the 20 year reunion in december....little more of a social gathering atmosphere.......

hopefully will continue that tradition of winning this friday...sure would help us out abunch....

Old Green
11-07-2007, 01:16 PM
Cory and I work out the same office. He looks like he could still start for the Gobblers.

Gobbla2001
11-07-2007, 08:58 PM
Originally posted by AAA87


would be fun...

december football this year, AA?

Bull19
11-07-2007, 08:59 PM
how come they cant smile in the picture????? shouldnt they be proud and happy of what they achieved

Gobbla2001
11-07-2007, 09:02 PM
Originally posted by Bull19
how come they cant smile in the picture????? shouldnt they be proud and happy of what they achieved

looks to me as if it was taken before the championship... still have the issued sweat pants, cleats and even pants (white guy in back)...

44INAROW
11-07-2007, 09:24 PM
Just FYI about the 3rd guy in the back row - The tradition continues - His oldest son graduated in May after a fine career as a Gobbler (and was coached by AAA87 in that game in Corpus this summer) And his youngest son is a Soph this year for the Gobblers (wearing the same #34) There is a nice picture of him pulling down an Apache at the www.gobblersports.com site - double click on the smaller version of the picture for a better look (mods - if putting the link to the site on here is a rule infraction, please excuse me and delete if necessary) ;)

Old Green
11-07-2007, 10:37 PM
Originally posted by 44INAROW
Just FYI about the 3rd guy in the back row - The tradition continues - His oldest son graduated in May after a fine career as a Gobbler (and was coached by AAA87 in that game in Corpus this summer) And his youngest son is a Soph this year for the Gobblers (wearing the same #34) There is a nice picture of him pulling down an Apache at the www.gobblersports.com site - double click on the smaller version of the picture for a better look (mods - if putting the link to the site on here is a rule infraction, please excuse me and delete if necessary) ;) No Problem. On our home page in the links it is there for anyone to use.;)