Brayden Farr didn’t have long to make a decision.
With his junior year fast approaching, Farr — a standout linebacker during his sophomore season at Mission Prep — had to decide whether to stay at the school as it transitioned to 8-man football or transfer to an 11-man program at another school.
New Mission Prep head coach David Schuster was understanding.
“He was one of several people that were considering transferring, and I don’t blame any one of them for considering that,” Schuster said. “Going from 11-man to 8- man when I was in high school, I probably would have done the same thing.”
Farr had seen two of his more talented teammates — Tim and Joseph Miller — decide they didn’t want to downsize and make the move from Mission Prep to St. Joseph. Farr considered joining his hometown Atascadero Greyhounds. Then he met with Schuster.
“Once he came in, I wanted to give him a chance and see what he was all about,” Farr said. “Honestly, he is the whole reason I stayed.”
Schuster convinced Farr to stay by selling him on the idea that there might be less people on the field, but the bond between them would be stronger. Farr said he could see that promise come true this offseason. Farr also liked Schuster’s plan to bring 11-man football back to Mission Prep for his senior season.
Farr is now adjusting to smaller field dimensions, fewer players on the, a new offense and a new position. Last season, Farr led the team in total tackles (99) as a linebacker, but he’s now moving to safety where Schuster feels he can have a bigger impact in the new configuration.
“I started out at linebacker because I am not the fastest,” said Farr, who will also be involved in the Royals’ power running game as a back.
To add speed, Farr competed in sprinting events during track season and now has more burst, even as a nagging groin injury has slowed him down.
“I am trying to play football in college, and I have a better shot at doing that at safety,” said Far, who was named a co-captain.
He’s confident the military-inspired discipline from Schuster can help get him there.
“You have what football gives you, but what I am going to learn from (Schuster) in terms of being a man and growing in that aspect, is going to be a lot more,” Farr said.
The Tribune 2017 prep football preview
Over the coming days, The Tribune will roll out its 2017 high school football preview looking at teams, top players and story lines from San Luis Obispo County schools leading to the opening of the season Friday. Find new daily content online at sanluisobispo.com/sports and in the Sports section.