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September 16, 2008As viewers from around the country tuned to cable news channels this past weekend to keep up with the effects of Hurricane Ike, they saw almost every major network reporting live from the Houston suburb of Clear Lake. Located on Galveston Bay, the eye passed over the area and the storm surge extended the lake's boundaries into many roads and parking lots.
However, for one Texas A&M commit who happens to live in the area, things could have been much work. Stephen Barrera recently returned home to survey the damage.
"We made it back to the house today," the 6-foot-5, 290-pound lineman said on Monday. "There's some trees down but, other than that, our house looks good. We actually have water and electricity, too and we didn't get flooded or anything."
Many of his teammates did not fare as well, though.
"The guys in Seabrook have it pretty bad," said Barrera. "There's lots of big trees and fences down around here, but over in Seabrook and the rest of the area along the water is bad. There are a bunch of guys on the team from down there, so we're going to see if anybody needs help with anything."
Clear Creek Independent School District is listed as being closed indefinitely until further notice at this time. Barrera said that is not keeping the Falcon team from at least at least part of their normal routine during what was already scheduled to be their bye week.
"I don't know when school is starting back," he said. "I think this whole week is going to be canceled. They really aren't sure past that yet, though.
"I think most of the guys from the team are back. We're trying to get together and do a little bit of practicing without the coaches since they're not allowed to be there. We're going up to the school trying to stay in shape and stuff."
As for the past five or so days, Barrera and his family actually evacuated to a familiar location. It is a place that he will be getting even more used to starting next year.
"We actually went up to College Station, to my brother's house," he said. "I tried to visit with the coaches while I was there, but they were all gone. There was only one in town, and I briefly talked to him."
As of right now, Barrera and his teammates are expected to resume their season in two weeks when they begin district play by hosting Galveston Ball. The game is scheduled for Thursday, Sep. 25 at 7 p.m.