ODESSA, Texas (KMID/KPEJ) – The Odessa Compass Academy Cougars are a young varsity football team, only being a program since 2020.
Since the introduction of their newest head coach, this football team has had a slow and steady turn around.
The Cougar’s now second-year Head Coach Floyd White has already greatly impacted this program and this school, finishing last season 4-7, a step up from the previous years where the Cougars would end with only one in the win column.
White said seeing this program made him excited for the opportunity, “To me it was a no brainer that this place was an absolute diamond in the rough.”
A team desparate for change, and a coach ready for something new, made for an easy decision.
“We’ve managed to carve a little niche out right here and we have a lot of people that really are supporting us and really want things to go great for us,” White mentioned when discussing what drew him to this program.
Since the program was created, the Cougars have had a tough time finding their footing, and are slowly but surely turning the program around with White at the helm.
“We’re one play away from being a three and one program, so it’s cool to watch how those kids are starting to respond to having success whenever they were lacking that before.”
White said the decision was easy, but there were of course some doubts taking over a relatively new program that was struggling in their first few seasons.
“You see the 91 nothings, you see the 61 nothings, you see that they’re giving up 50 points a game, you’re sitting there thinking, ‘uh oh!'” White laughed. “But at the same time you look at these kids and you’re going, there’s a lot of talent here, we just have to refine it and so that’s where you have to be confident in yourself, and what you’re doing to be able to go ahead and translate that over to the kids.”
In just a season and a half under White, the Cougars have since tripled their wins.
He added he saw something special with this program and these athletes, “In my mind, in my heart, and in my soul, I knew that we could be better. I knew it was there, I knew they had it in them, and so it was just a matter of trying to get that out.”
White believes the success is leading to more Cougars coming out of the woodworks to join the fight.
“The kids started to see that, they started to see the success and ultimately, your best recruiters are your kids and so they started recruiting and pulling people out of the hallway and now we’ve more than double our numbers in the last 6-8 months and so that’s one of the great things happening here.”
White said he is determined to finish what he started.
“God willing, I’ll be able to make it through this thing another, 20-30 years, or however long it happens to be and then eventually they’ll go ahead and show me the exit,” he laughed. “When I can’t do it anymore but, ultimately I do want to retire from this place.”