This, of course, has been weighing heavily on the minds of the Zephyr boys, who are an inexperienced lot and weren't included in most of the rankings. They are quiet as they form a line and take trays and silverware and decide on breakfast.
"Where's Torrey?" Bufe says. "What's Torrey got on his head? You got some paw prints, Torrey?"
Torrey McClain runs a hand over his nearly naked scalp, which was shaved by a teammate just this week. "Nosuh," he says. "Just some nicks."
"Nicks," Bufe says, giving his head a shake. "We need to look up in the Guinness Book of World Records to see the record for the number of nicks on a head."
Zephyr means gentle breeze, Bufe will tell you. The word comes from some foreign language he's not familiar with. And, yes, Zephyr seems the sort of town you breeze through on your way someplace else, with only a caution light to signal its existence and with only one store, Petty's Grocery & Feed, to satisfy its needs.
In appearance Zephyr is not unlike most other six-man towns around Texas: dirt-poor and down around the mouth, wounded by a depressed ranching economy but still limping along. The most interesting thing to have happened there lately occurred 95 years ago when a tornado went through and flattened everything in sight, including the high school, which was later replaced by a clunky stone structure that bears an uncanny resemblance to the Alamo.
"We might be small, but we do have cable TV in Zephyr," says lineman Jeremy King. "We watch football from all over."
"Personally, I got no use for 11-man," says Mark Schwartz, a cornerback. "It's boring. I can't stand it."
"I honestly don't know what 11-man's like," says linebacker Dusty Miller. "I seen it, but I don't know nothing about it."
"Me, I never even been out of Texas," says McClain, the kid with the nicked head. "As a matter of fact, I never even been farther than San Antone. My mom works at the Red Wagon restaurant in Brownwood. My dad, I don't talk to him. I went to Fort Worth before. I had eye surgery once, and it might've been in Dallas. That's what they tell me, anyway."