When Tre Bugg’s sophomore year came to an end in 2014, he was only 5-4. A young man with a great knowledge of the game, great speed and athleticism but just not the size to help him along the way.
Bugg stepped foot on campus just months later for the start of his 2015 season as a junior and all of a sudden his was 5-11. Growing a whole seven inches in the span of about four or five months. That fast growth, while helpful, had it’s share of growing pains along the way.
“It was definitely tough,” Bugg told Sports360AZ.com. “I had shin problems, like shin splints from growing all that.”
Bugg knew he could play football at this level. He is one that prides himself on technique and being a smart player. The drastic growth from one year to the next however has been key to him taking a big step forward as a junior.
“I just kept working hard in the offseason,” explained Bugg. “I look at my Dad and I know I am going to be bigger, so as soon as I hit that growth spurt, I did a little happy dance. I was happy.”
“We’re not big on the eye test,” said Williams Field head coach Steve Campbell. “So Tre was a little guy from when he was a freshman and sophomore but he played and he played great and he made plays. Those guys see the field. It doesn’t matter what their stature is.”
Since he was 12 years old, Bugg has been training with former NFL and Alabama defensive back Mark McMillian. Nicknamed ‘Mighty Mouse’ over the course of his career, if there was ever a player that Bugg could learn from on getting the most out of yourself regardless of your size, it’s McMillian.
“Me and Coach McMillian actually talk a lot about that,” Bugg stated. “We talk about how size is just part of the game and technique is very important. As you can see, he was a Pro Bowler at a solid 5-7. So anything can happen.”
“He made plays for us as a sophomore playing some varsity and a little on JV,” mentioned Steve Campbell of Bugg. “He played for us in the state championship game. Now with those inches he grew this summer, which were quite a few, I think it’s going to put him in a good position for playing at a high level for playing after high school.”
Schools that come after high school are beginning to take notice. Opposing teams are learning that when they throw in Bugg’s direction, it has not ended well and coaches at the next level are starting to see these plays being made. In addition, his increased size now consists of a measurable that is impossible to ignore.
“I am starting to get the attention of several D-1 schools,” Bugg said. “A lot of Ivy League schools, Harvard, U of A, which I am actually going to take an unofficial visit to tomorrow (Saturday), and Cal Berkley.”
Bugg and the Williams Field defense hauled in four interceptions in their win over Sunnyside for week five of the season. Bugg had two of those, both coming in the first quarter alone. The Black Hawks are now 4-1 on the season with Higley coming up next week.