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Spring Preview: Bobcats start practice after historic season

The Bobcats return back to the gridiron to start spring practice. Returning for the Bobcats is running back Ismail Mahdi who led the team in rushing with 1,331 yards.
Daily Record Photo by Gerald Castillo

Spring Preview: Bobcats start practice after historic season

Wide receiver Joey Hobert leads a potent wide receiver room for the Bobcats, Hobert led the team in catches with 76 for 895 yards and eight touchdowns.
Daily Record Photo by Gerald Castillo

Spring Preview: Bobcats start practice after historic season

Wednesday, March 20, 2024

The Bobcats will hit the field this week to start spring practice in preparation for the 2024 season.

Texas State is coming off of their best season since moving up to FBS in 2012. The Bobcats finished with an 8-5 record including winning their first ever bowl game in the Servpro First Responder Bowl.

Heading into the 2024 season, the expectations for the Bobcats are sky high with many media outlets projecting Texas State to be a contender for the Sun Belt Conference crown.

Here is a breakdown of the positions for the Bobcats.


Texas State pulled a rabbit out of the hat during the offseason following the transfer of record breaking quarterback T.J. Finley and the withdrawal of Jayden de Laura.

Sun Belt Player of the Year Jordan McCloud announced his intentions to transfer to Texas State from James Madison. McCloud threw for 3,657 yards, 35 touchdowns and 10 interceptions for the Dukes.


Ismail Mahdi will headline a stout running back room that could be one of the deepest not only in conference but in the country.

Mahdi was the leading rusher for the Bobcats carrying the ball 223 times for 1,331 yards and scoring ten touchdowns.

Madi also caught 20 passes for 275 yards and one touchdown while becoming one of the most dangerous kick returners en route to earning All-American Honors.

Joining Mahdi is Lincoln Pare, Texas State’s leading rusher from the 2022 season. Pare rushed for 772 yards for the Bobcats before missing the 2023 season due to a leg injury.

Also coming to San Marcos is the duo of Deion Hankins and Torrance Burgess Jr. from UTEP.

The two backs led the rushing attack for the Miners with Hankins carrying the ball 157 times for 812 yards and five touchdowns and Burgess Jr. carrying the ball 124 times for 620 yards and two touchdowns.


A dangerous wide receiver room from last year might be even stronger come fall.

The Bobcats return the majority of their starters at wide receiver headed up by Joey Hobert.

Hobert led the team in both catches [76], receiving yards [895] and touchdowns [8] for Texas State.

Also returning to Texas State is Kole Wilson, who caught 66 passes for 747 yards and eight touchdowns.

While the Bobcats saw receiver Ashtyn Hawkins transfer to Baylor, the cupboard wasn’t bare with receivers Drew Donley, Chris Dawn Jr, Beau Sparks and Kylen Evans competing to fill the spot at the third and fourth receiver positions.


Texas State will work to replace several starters on the offensive line mainly at center and right guard.

Returning to the Bobcats are lineman Nash Jones, Trenton Scott, Dorian Strawn, and Jimeto Obigbo, who all started last season. Joining from last year’s roster are Marcus Alexander, Chayse Todd and Emeka Obigbo.

Texas State also added transfers Tellek Lockette from ULM and Issiah Walker from Butler Community College.


Similar to the offensive line, Bobcats will have to replace key starters on the defense line while also returning key starters.

Defensive end Ben Bell returns as the leading tackler from the line with 57 total tackles and ten sacks from last season.

Dominique Ratliff and Tavian Coleman also return for the Bobcats at defensive tackle, with the duo totaling 27 tackles each, as well as Myron Warren and Terry Webb.

Joining from the transfer portal are Steven Parker from UIW, Alex Merritt from Eastern Michigan and Brice Bass from Gardner-Webb.


The linebacker position will face the most turnover with the graduation of leading tackler Brian Holloway and the transfer of Dan Foster Jr.

Kenny Haynes and Derick Mourning Jr. will look to pick up the torch for the Bobcats after playing behind Holloway and Foster Jr.

Transfers Jordan Smith of Navarro College, James Neal of UTEP and Max Harris of ULM will also compete for the spots.


The defensive back room will have the most returning starters on defense.

Safety Tory Spears will look to lead the position group after missing last season with an injury.

Starting safety Kaleb Culp is back with the Bobcats totaling 81 tackles from last season.

Ryan Nolan, a transfer from Hutchinson Community College, will also join the room.

At the cornerback position, Chris Mills and Josh Eaton will return for the Bobcats.

Coming in from the transfer portal are Dontae Thompson from Arkansas State, Trez Moore of UTEP and Justin Harris of Cincinnati.


Mason Shipley returns for the Bobcats after being a perfect 15-15 from field goals and 58-59 from point after attempts.

Darius Green and David Nunez will compete for the starting job as punter following the graduation of Seamus O’Kelly.

cmcwilliams Twitter: @ColtonBMc

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