With an undefeated season and a national championship under their belts, the Blue Bulldogs, an under 8 peewee football team in Beaumont, gathered in the council chambers Tuesday, Feb 12, to be honored by Mayor Becky Ames and the Beaumont City Council.
The team is part of the Intermediate Football League in Beaumont, boasting a full staff of coaches and at least 27 players ages 8 or younger.
After winning the Southeast Texas Junior Football League Super Bowl, the Blue Bulldogs advanced to the Amateur Athletic Union where they kept their undefeated title while adding another: National Champions.
“We did a lot this year,” said head coach Derek Rivers. “The boys have accomplished a lot.”
In a sign of humility, Rivers was sure to share the credit with the parents of each young athlete.
“We couldn’t have done it without the parents,” Rivers said.
Assistant Head Coach Jim Gilliam said he too was proud of his players and their parents, adding an undefeated season in any sport is rare.
“It doesn’t happen much,” he said.
Councilman Audwin Samuel energetically cheered the youngsters at Tuesday’s council meeting, encouraging the players to go for another gold.
“Will you be back next year with another championship?” he asked.
Coach Gilliam replied, “It gets harder the older you get.”
— Clay Thorp