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Coral joins Vaqueros
Ramon Coral - photo by Contributed to the Courier

Ramon Coral committed to play football for Santa Barbara City College in April.

The 2015 Ceres High grad started training with the Vaqueros during the summertime.

"It's another level of intensity," said Coral, a 6-foot-4 270-pound lineman. "I need to get faster and stronger. The goal is to earn a scholarship to a four-year school."

Santa Barbara City College opens the 2015 season at San Bernardino Valley on Sept. 5.

The Vaqueros compiled a 7-4 overall record and qualified for a bowl game for the first time in 17 years in 2014.

"It's very demanding out here," said Coral, who will contribute at tackle on offense. "Every day, we have position meetings at 2 and practice at 4. I'm up for the challenge."

Coral started on both the offensive and defensive lines during his two-year stint with the Bulldogs' varsity squad.

Ceres High finished 2-8 in 2013 and 3-7 in 2014.

Coral garnered second-team all-Western Athletic Conference recognition this past season.

Ramon totaled 28 tackles and 21/2 sacks.

"We wanted to change the culture of Ceres High football," Coral said. "It's not a huge improvement. But it's a stepping stone. Everybody had fun."

Ceres High upset Central Valley 24-7 during Coral's senior year.

The victory eliminated the Hawks from playoff consideration on the final day of the regular season.

Ceres High also ended a seven-year losing streak versus Central Valley.

"That's one of my favorite memories of my high-school career, beating Central Valley and going up to the front office, and seeing the trophy," Coral said. "I'm glad we got the trophy back."

Coral played in a pair of prep all-star football games during the summer.

Ramon collected three tackles and one sack as the North shut out the South 15-0 in the Rotary All-Star contest on June 26 at Golden Valley High School's Veterans Stadium.

A late addition to the 42nd Annual Lions Club All-Star Game, Coral made two tackles in the South's 51-38 triumph over the North On June 13 at Tracy High School.

"It felt good to represent Ceres High School and the city of Ceres," Coral said. "The experience to connect with other players was the best part. I was surrounded by a bunch of talent."

Coral lives in an apartment, along with three other teammates, several blocks from the college. The drive from Ceres to Santa Barbara took five hours.

"It's a very beautiful place," Ramon said while talking about the campus. "It's right on the beach."

Coral teamed up with quarterback Brad Bussard for three seasons at Ceres High, including two at the varsity level. Ramon blocked for Brad.

"I honestly think he'll move on to a four-year college," Bussard said. "He works hard. He's a great teammate. He's the type of guy that makes teams better."

"I've played football since I was eight years old," Coral said. "It's a very special game. It's mental and physical at the same time. Not everybody can play it."