Wranglers Host Open Tryouts, Sign Players/Hire Coaches, and Donate Defibrillator

Vince Papale did it, why can't you? The Wranglers will be hosting an open player tryout on Sunday, Dec. 3, at the Round Rock ISD Stadium (10211 Parmer Ln.) beginning at 9am (registration begins at 8am). Participants will be tested on an artificial grass surface in the 40- and 20-yard dash, short shuttle, broad jump, and position-specific football drills. Eight players have been signed by the Wranglers in the past, following an open tryout including standout wide receiver Kevin Nickerson who led Austin with 24 pass TDs last season. Who knows, maybe Marky Mark will be portraying you someday in a big-budget Hollywood sports drama. Maybe not.

In the last several weeks the Wranglers have been solidifying their 06-07 roster with the signing of a dozen players. Of notable local interest is the acquisition of former UT linebacker/defensive end Mike Williams. His stats with the Horns include 34 tackles, six sacks, 15 quarterback hurries, he caused three fumbles, and one fumble recovery. Other Wrangler signees with regional college football ties are defensive lineman Patrice Majondo-Mwamabe formerly a Texas Tech Red Raider and former TCU wide receiver Adrain Madise. All three of these players are AFL newbies.

Other first-year AFLers signed by Austin include offensive lineman Jonathon Dunn, quarterback Matt Kubik, defensive lineman Durrand Roundtree, offensive lineman Jason Russell, wide receiver Tariq “Sakeen” Wright, quarterback Lang Campbell, wide receiver Jake Schifino, and offensive lineman Tony Tella. Schifino returned 35 kickoffs for the Tennessee Titans for 703 yards in 2003 and was most recently signed with the Houston Texans. Flashy WR Derrick Lewis who led the Wranglers in receiving yards and receptions last year is currently on the Texans roster but has yet to break into their game-day rotation.

The Wranglers also signed AFL veteran fullback/linebacker Chad Dukes. Dukes is the No. 5 all-time AFL rusher with 1,123 yards on 252 carries, won an Arena Bowl with the Colorado Crush in 2005, and spent time with Wranglers part-owner Deion Sanders with the Washington Redskins in 2000.

In some off-the-field news, the Wranglers hired Wayne Hodes as their chief operating officer and completed their coaching staff with the hiring of secondary coach Stephen Braggs and offensive line coach Bruce Cowdrey. Braggs was a defensive back for UT (1983-1987) and spent seven years in the NFL with the Cleveland Browns and the Miami Dolphins. Head coach Brian Partlow, defensive coordinator Lee Johnson, and special teams/receivers coach Chris MacKeown round out the Wranglers coaching staff.

Tonight the Wranglers will be donating an Automated External Defibrillator to the Hutto ISD during Hutto's 7:30pm game vs. the Taylor Ducks at Hippo Stadium.

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