SAN BENITO — For three years San Benito running back Fabian Garcia terrorized opposing defenses across the RGV.

From running rampant against bitter rival Harlingen High to pounding his way through the always tough Weslaco High Panthers, Garcia almost always left his stamp on a contest during his three-year career with the Greyhounds.

The 5-foot-8 running back won’t be causing headaches for high school defenses in the RGV next fall anymore, with graduation just around the corner.

RGV football fans will still be able to see the dominant running back over the next four years, however, with Garcia signing his National Letter of Intent to continue his football career at UTRGV during a ceremony Thursday at the San Benito Gymnasium.

San Benito’s Fabian Garcia signs his national letter of intent to play football at UTRGV next fall during a ceremony Thursday at San Benito High School. (Ivan Palacios | RGVSports)

“I’m feeling great,” Garcia said. “The main reason I chose UTRGV is because the coaches are really looking out and reaching out. Every game they’d reach out to us. It’s a brand-new program so I don’t know much about it, but when I went to visit, I just felt at home. I know the Valley is already home but this is just 45 minutes away, so it felt good.”

Finding highlight plays from Garcia’s three-year varsity career isn’t hard, with the future Vaquero breaking onto the scene as a sophomore with a 1,204-rushing yard, 11 touchdown campaign.

His debut season was just the tip of the iceberg for Garcia, following it up with 2,230 rushing yards and 29 touchdowns as a junior en route to the Herald/Star offensive player of the year award.

San Benito running back Fabian Garcia (14) carries the ball during a playoff game his junior year. (Denise Cathey | Brownsville Herald)

Garcia’s senior year presented new challenges, with defenses formulating game plans to stop the Greyhounds superstar.

None of that mattered, however, with Garcia still putting together an MVP-like season, racking up 1,761 rushing yards and 21 touchdowns along with 332 receiving yards and five scores on 15 catches.

(Video Courtesy of Fabian Garcia's Hudl Profile)

Garcia finished his career as a three-time all-area superlative award winner, earning the Valley Morning Star newcomer of the year award as a sophomore and adding back-to-back Herald/Star offensive player of the year honors as a junior and senior.

He also leaves San Benito as the program’s all-time leading rusher, averaging 8.7 yards per carry en route to 5,193 rushing yards and 61 touchdowns. He also added 22 catches for 455 yards and six scores.

“My older brother played varsity here for about three years I believe,” Garcia said. “I always looked up to him. I wanted to be a Greyhound football player like him. When I was little, I always wanted to set my mark somewhere. I’m realizing now, high school is already pretty much done, but I left my mark here. My biggest memories are always going to be being on the practice field and playing games with my brothers here.”

Garcia joins a UTRGV signing class that features eight other RGV athletes. He’s set to suit up alongside PSJA North’s Alejandro Aparicio, Danny Garcia, Dante Garcia and Joe Derek Vecchio; Edinburg Vela’s Jamal Polley and Jaxson Shupe; Brownsville Veterans’ Nick Tovar and Harlingen Marine Military Academy’s Mehki Blue in the future.

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