El Campo junior Brock Rod gets ready to throw a pass during warmups in a game earlier this season. His helmet, along with others, is loaded with stars.


The offense and defense aren’t the only things that have changed this season underneath first-year El Campo Ricebirds head coach Chad Worrell. If you’ve looked closely, football players’ helmets are full of stars.

El Campo helmets last year were red with a giant EC on both sides, above the ear, and a thick white stripe across the center from the front to the back. This season, varsity helmets are adorned with white stars to varying degrees depending on the player.

The stars get awarded to players following Thursday practices, honoring the different team and individual goals hit during the previous game.

“I’ve been at places a long time where we gave out helmet decals,” Worrell said. “A lot of (schools do it). Colleges do it, Ohio State comes to mind. It’s something we give the kids for team goals and they have a chance to gather some individual awards, (like) a sack, an interception, or a fumble recovery.”

Offensive team goals for the Ricebirds include scoring more than 34 points and over 350 yards of offense. Defense team goals include fewer than 200 yards of offense, fewer than 15 points and winning the turnover battle. Special teams’ goals include punt team averages over 37 yards and making all extra points, amongst others, five in each category.

Any player who plays on a unit at all during the game earns a star if the team hits a goal.

The stars have been a hit for the players this season.

“I think it’s cool to show the players how much they are doing for the team,” senior center Jack Dorotik said. “It’s cool to have a little reward for what you’re doing.”

“I love it. You get stars for everything you do,” junior running back Rueben Owens II said. “You get stars for touchdowns, a win, defense getting stops and field goals, it’s great. It shows (Worrell) really cares about us.”

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