NEDERLAND — NEDERLAND – Three generations have passed since Nederland won the state title in 1957. This year, three generations of Spells have the Bulldogs eyeing that goal again.
Nederland defensive coordinator Delbert Spell graduated from Nederland in 1969, joined the Nederland coaching ranks in 1973 at C.O. Wilson before moving up to the high school coaching staff in 1984. He’s been the only defensive coordinator Larry Neumann has had in 20 years at Nederland and has been fortunate to coach both his sons, Bryan and Brandon, along with his grandson Tyler.
“After every game, after we get through talking, I go find my grandson and give him a hug,” Delbert Spell said. “I’ve been blessed and fortunate to be at a place who would want to keep me this long. My hope is that (Tyler) gets the lessons of football. It’s about being unselfish in your role and doing the best for the team.”
Tyler, a senior, grew up as a ball boy on this team, along with fellow receiver Seth Barrow. He said the two don’t talk about having relatives on the coaching staff.
“It’s pretty great,” Tyler Spell said. “I grew up watching them as coaches. Playing for them has been surreal. (Seth and I) both understand and have the same mentality about this. When we were ball boys, we used to talk about how great it’d be to grow up and do all these great things. To grow up together and finally get to do it, it’s been a great experience.”
Tyler Spell has one catch for 5 yards this season and has made six tackles. As a member of the team’s receiving corps, his position coach is his uncle Bryan. In that capacity, Bryan has coached Tyler for the past four years.
“It’s been a lot of fun,” Bryan Spell said. “The reason is because of him and his hard work. He’s a lot like his dad and my dad with his hard work. I’ve gotten to coach him the last four years, along with all these seniors. It’s been a pleasure. He’s been easy to coach and one of my favorites to coach.