It’s such a stupid, silly thing really. Whole towns losing their collective minds over a damn game played by children. I can’t defend it to skeptics, it’s not rational. I am all too aware of its abuses, especially on rainy mornings when my ankles creak and sing of forgotten glories. Driving home late from another … Continue reading Now, it begins again… (Friday Night Lights)
Men, I hate to break it to you, but your fate is sealed. Yeah, the experts all agree: the 2014 Overton Mustangs will finish “next to last” in District 11-2A competition and thus will be unable to reach the playoffs. It’s written down somewhere, so it must be true… right? Surely these people know what they’re talking about. C’mon, if Dave Campbell’s Texas Football and TheOldCoach.com’s Friday Night Football say it’s gonna happen, it’s gonna happen. Right? Obviously they’ve done the research and looked at all the evidence to come to an objective outlook on the coming year.
If you’re a former Overton Mustang football player, your alumni team needs you.
Overton High School graduates from as far back as 1990 (Kurt Kitchings and Steven Sikes) to as recent as 2013 (Greg Moore) have pledged to play. The game is set tentatively for February/March of 2014, possibly against the Arp Tiger alums — a once passionate rivalry that’s cooled in recent years.
As a rule, when it comes to sports — especially youth sports — I try to give the kids the benefit of the doubt and save my sharpest criticisms for the coaching staff. The coaches understand this, it’s part of the job. If you win, everyone thinks you’re a genius. If you lose, they think you’re a bum. Tale as old as time.
However, Friday night’s wretched performance is more than I can bear. Against my better judgment I’ve decided to point the full force of my observation to what I believe to be the most grievous weakness about this team. All in the hopes that by publicly drawing it to your attention — and speaking for those who came before you — it might provoke in you the sting of shame that every proud man who wore the green and white now feels.
But first, a few words of praise.
That’s right — before I take you to task, I want set a few things straight.
Coaching at a school with decades of dominance spanning back to the early 1930s, Overton’s second-year man Josh Barton joined an exclusive club during 2012’s improbable district championship and playoff run. Barton is one of only three Overton coaches all-time to win at least a share of a league title as well as achieve a postseason win in their first season. It’s an honor he says is not lost on him.
“Overton is a school with an excellent athletic tradition, a tradition of excellence in all sports, and football especially,” he said. “It’s an honor to part of such a great tradition, and to be a part in helping this generation achieve success both on and off the field of play.”
One of the most poignant facts of high school football is that it often goes by too quickly… and when it’s over, it’s over forever.
Or is it?
With a 2 p.m. kickoff on Sunday, Jan. 27 Overton and Carlisle alumni teams will square off in Coach Chester Roy Stadium, for what organizers hope is an annual tradition. Practices are also currently ongoing at 3 p.m. every Sunday afternoon on the football field.
It’s finally here, my favorite time of the year.
Living in East Texas, we tend to “miss out” on the more sensual aspects of autumn. By the time the leaves start falling from the trees it’s dang near winter. It’s not unheard of to have 90-degree days in the middle of October. Last year I took my kids trick-of-treating in a t-shirt.
But there’s one thing we’ve got in East Texas that more than makes up for it, we’ve got high school football season.