The Roberts family, Kylie (left), Shannon, Kaden, and Davy, pose for a photo at Marble Falls High School's Mustang Stadium. Kaden was named homecoming king during halftime of the Mustangs’ football game against Killeen Chaparral on Sept. 9. Courtesy photo
As his senior year progresses, Marble Falls High School center Kaden Roberts plans to leave nothing to chance, especially as the football team prepares for its biggest rival: the Burnet Bulldogs. The District 13-4A Division I contest is Friday, Oct. 14, at Mustang Stadium.
“It’s going to be a good game,” Roberts said. “For Burnet, we’re always preparing more. Everyone is locked in and focused on the game. I’m really excited.”
Roberts was a freshman when Marble Falls hired head coach Brian Herman. Somewhat of a rebel among the ranks of Texas high school football coaches, Herman immediately bucked Marble Falls’ traditional pass-heavy spread offense and installed his preferred system: the Slot-T.
Built on running the ball as opposed to passing, Herman’s system lives and dies with its offensive line. As starting center, Roberts’ role is indispensable.
“As a center, you have to know where the ball is going, who is blocking who, who is running what hole, who is going out for what pass,” he said. “You just have to know every detail because it affects everything.”
In Herman’s system, each player on the line possesses a certain skill set. Obviously, the coach prefers tough, imposing linemen with a knack for aggressive play. However, his center must demonstrate football intelligence and be a leader on and off the field.
Roberts fits the bill.
“When people are down during practice, I try to pick them back up because I know it will help them a lot,” he said. “During games, I try to make sure everyone stays focused on the task at hand.”
The veteran center understands that no one can play a perfect game. Instead, Roberts relies on positivity and a willingness to work at his craft each day to make himself a better player.
“Everyone makes mistakes,” he said. “The best thing to do is look forward to the next play and learn from your mistakes.”
To avoid costly errors, Roberts watches tape around the clock.
“During the school week, I watch film from the other team every single day so I can learn the defense’s weak points, how the linebackers read keys, and how the defensive line gets off blocks,” he said. “I also watch my own film so I can learn what I can do to get better.”
Planning to study at Texas A&M University upon graduation, Roberts hopes to major in business before one day returning to the Hill Country to work for his dad’s company, Lone Star Land Partners.
With only a handful of games left in his high school career, Roberts has already identified some of the things he’ll miss most about playing for the Mustangs.
“I’ll miss the camaraderie of the team more than anything,” he said. “I’ll also miss all my coaches. They’re all really great people.”
The game between Marble Falls (2-4) and Burnet (3-3) kicks off at 7:30 p.m. Friday. Listen live on KBEY 103.9 FM Radio Picayune, at KBEYFM.com, or via the free KBEY app starting with a 7 p.m. pregame show.