The Tarleton Texans will enjoy the benefits of a Tiger football infusion for years to come, and Glen Rose fans will get to enjoy much of the action in person.
2012 Tiger football stars Jared Thames and Cody Burtscher have both recently committed to play ball for Tarleton.
In the case of Thames, the 7-3A Lineman of the Year, the senior defensive end decommitted from Air Force to become a Texan.
“I thought long and hard about it, and I realized I just didn’t want to be in the Air Force, and I wanted to be closer to home,” Thames said. “The (Tarleton) coaches came and visited with me at (GRHS in December) and I went down there for an official visit (on Jan. 12) and really liked it. They made the offer, I went home and thought about it and in a couple of days I had my mind made up.”
Tarleton would like to utilize Thames at defensive tackle.
“My role (next season) depends on how I show up and play,” he said. “They don’t want to put me out there that first year unless I’m definitely ready to contribute.”
Thames, who tentatively plans to major in physical therapy, said he really likes what Texans head coach Cary Fowler is doing down in Stephenville.
“They’re looking to make the move up to Div. I in the next couple of years, and it will be really exciting to be there when that stuff is happening,” he said.
Fans of Thames can easily continue to enjoy the current Tiger’s on-field work up close and personal.
“It’s exciting to know that people who watched me play in high school and junior high will be able to drive 30 minutes and watch me play at the next level,” he said. “It will be a lot of fun.”
After Burtscher was named 7-3A Offensive Player of the Year and was recognized as an AP 3A All-State Honorable Mention Running Back, he will also transition from Tiger to Texan.
“It feels pretty good to know I still have a future in football, and especially to know it’s going to be paid for,” Burtscher said. “It relieves a lot of stress and it’s good to know you are wanted at the next level.”
Burtscher was patient as the opportunity came his way.
“I was letting coaches call me instead of me looking really hard,” he said. “Since Tarleton had watched me play three times in the last two years, they contacted me and I ended up going for an official visit where they said they’d give me a full ride.”
Coaches told Burtscher he’d enter the program as an “athlete” and they will see what he can do.
“The coach wants to start me out at running back/receiver, but if that doesn’t work out he’ll move me to safety,” Burtscher said. “They’d like me to redshirt to get stronger and faster, but if I can play and they needed me then I’d play in the first year.”
Burtscher plans to major in pre-physical therapy, adding that it will open up a lot of doors for him in the medical field. Getting back to the field, he sees a program on the rise.
“Tarleton is really improving and in six months we’ll know if they’re going Div. I or not,” Burtscher said. “They’re renovating all of their facilities, and I’m really excited about going there.”
The Glen Rose senior is pleased his family of fans will continue to watch him make plays in person.
“It feels good because my parents can easily come watch every home game – me and the other Glen Rose guys,” he said.