CUERO – Jack Alvarez plans to meet with the Cuero athletes Friday morning.
He’ll deliver the same message as he has during a 22-year head coaching career.
“I’ll tell them how excited I am about being here for one,” Alvarez said. “I’ll try to make sure that they know that they will be the priority of the program. We’ll start from there. We’re going to do the best job we can to help them be successful.”
Alvarez, 54, is looking forward to getting started after being unanimously approved as the athletic director and head football coach at Thursday night’s meeting of the Cuero school district board of trustees.
“It’s the tradition,” Alvarez said. “The tradition of the community has here. That was probably No. 1 seeing that year-in and year-out it’s always one of the top programs in the state.”
Alvarez comes to Cuero from Copperas Cove, where he was the athletic director and head football coach for two seasons.
He will replace Travis Reeve, who resigned in January to become the head football coach at New Caney.
Alvarez has also been a head coach at Ennis, Kirbyville and Pineland West Sabine and has an overall record of 175-85.
He led Ennis to the 2014 Class 5A, Division II state championship, and Kirbyville to state final appearances in 2008 and 2009.
“I’ve coached at every level,” Alvarez said. “Football is football, kids are kids and the competition whether it’s 6A, 5A or college football, the game is still the game. I think this size school has some of the purest football. It allows for all size kids to play, and it allows for tough kids to get out there and play football. It doesn’t matter if you’re a great athlete or your average guy and to me that makes it a lot of fun.”
Alvarez plans to complete his staff and evaluate the program before making any major changes.
“I have followed some really good guys,” he said. “People like Sam Harrell at Ennis and Jack Welch at Copperas Cove. What I always try to do is be very respectful of what their success has been. Also, we’ve got to look forward. Whatever changes I do decide to do is not out of disrespect, but done out of what I think to get the program going.
The Gobblers slipped to 3-7 last season and missed the playoffs after winning the Class 4A, Division II state championship in 2018.
Alvarez has taken over successful programs at Ennis and Copperas Cove, and a struggling program at Kirbyville, which had lost 26 consecutive games.
“You go into a place where it’s 0-26, there is no pressure,” he said. “You’re the smartest guy in town when it comes to football. You take over a program like Ennis or Cuero, the tradition and community is usually pretty well versed in the expectations of the kids and the team. I sometimes think the kids play up to that.”
Alvarez worked with Cuero Superintendent Micah Dyer at Kirbyville. Alvarez was ready to rejoin Dyer after his first visit to the city.
“You walk in and everything is green and white,” Alvarez said. “You see Gobblers everywhere, and you can tell the people here are pretty fanatical about their football.”