HARTSHORNE — Hartshorne senior running back Dallas Herring’s fate as a football player might’ve been decided the day he was born.
With much of his family from Texas, Herring was named after the Dallas Cowboys.
“It’s the biggest thing in my life,” Herring said Wednesday.
Though born in Tulsa, Herring said he’s lived his whole life in Hartshorne. His football career began with Pee Wee games in third grade.
“In third grade against Gore, I had a pretty big hit, and it got all the coaches pretty riled up,” Herring said. “I was playing linebacker at the time.”
Herring said he’s always been a running back, but small-school football usually demands most kids play both sides of the ball. Originally a linebacker on defense, Herring switched to cornerback when he transferred from Haileyville to Hartshorne before his junior year.
“I prefer offense,” Herring said. He added his favorite thing about being a running back is “getting to score.”
Transferring forced Herring to learn an entirely new offensive scheme. Whereas Haileyville snapped with the quarterback under center, Hartshorne used a faster, more complex spread offense.
“I could definitely tell the attitude, it was taken more seriously here,” Herring said. “Everything was more in a serious manner. I liked it.
“Growing up in the ‘Twin Cities’ (of Hartshorne and Haileyville), I knew everybody pretty well. So it was pretty easy to adapt to the new surroundings.”
Herring quickly learned the new system and had no trouble making varsity. He played his first home game in Week 1, taking on Henryetta at Butler-Jennings Field.
“I wouldn’t say I was nervous,” Herring said. “I was excited to play for a new team and get to experience that.
“There are a bunch of little kids running around, looking up to you, a bunch of ex-Miners here to support you. You can definitely feel the school pride.”