With almost all new starters this season, first-year Portales High football coach Jaime Ramirez wouldn't mind having a little more time to get ready for the season opener.
Unfortunately, it's not possible and the Rams will just have to do the best they can when they take on Robertson in today's 7 p.m. lidlifter for both teams at Las Vegas, N.M.
"You always want to have more time to prepare, but our kids are ready to go," Ramirez said. "We want to see what we can do against a live opponent."
The Cardinals beat the Rams twice last season — 26-7 in the season opener at Blackwater Draw and 31-7 at Las Vegas in a first-round Class 3A playoff game — but Ramirez sees similarities with both teams going into the opener after scouting a lightning-abbreviated scrimmage against Tucumcari last week.
"I thought they looked a lot like we did — they were aggressive, flew to the football well," Ramirez said. "They moved the ball well at times."
With the weather, Ramirez said he and his coaches didn't really get much of a look at the Cardinals because the Cardinals and Rattlers were only able to run a handful of plays. But he said Robertson, like the Rams, was hit fairly hard by graduation, so it could be a pretty competitive game.
"I think it might be," he said.
Robertson runs a variety of sets on offense, Ramirez said, including an offset-I at times.
"They run the ball a lot and throw it out of play-action," he said. "They'll try to spread you out a little bit at times."
Ramirez said the Rams have some players dinged up, but for the most part the squad is relatively healthy.