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Central Texas Local News | kcentv.com

Bartlett welcomes new coach, confident tradition will be restored

Brian Kozma made the move from Liberty Hill late in the summer, after Drew Bridges left for Florence.

BARTLETT, Texas — After a late change, the Bartlett Bulldogs have a new head coach in 2019.

Brian Kozma made the late move from Liberty Hill to replace Drew Bridges, who left late in the summer for Florence.

Kozma said he was drawn to Bartlett by the tradition and believes the kids are inspired they can bring the pride and tradition Bartlett saw during their runs in the 90's.

"We're bringing back the confidence," Kozma said. "We're bringing back the excitement. That's what I'm all about, I'm all about getting these kids to play, getting them to believe in each other, getting them to show out and say, 'You know what, we're here to play, again. We're here to make a difference.' That's what I'm excited about."

The players have bought in on the change, too.

"Expectations are really high," senior center and linebacker JJ Shaw said. "We're hoping to make it to the playoffs and now have an 0-10 season."

A junior in a key role said the mindset has changed on the team, quickly.

"We actually want to work out and run the ball this year," junior running back Levonta Davis said. "Everybody wants to work as a team."

The Bulldogs open the 2019 season celebrating their 1999 state championship Aug. 30, hosting Hubbard.