We welcomed nearly 800 new students the past two weeks into Wylie ISD classrooms, and many of our kiddos come from different states. I feel compelled to warn my families from Cali or the East Coast not to be alarmed by the crazed people who may or may not spontaneously yell, “IT’S FOOTBALL FRIDAY IN TEXAS, Y’ALL!” in the line at Tom Thumb. They really do mean well.
Texas takes high school football very seriously. In fact, 25% of all NFL quarterbacks come from our high school programs. If your child plays sports or is in the band, you know the time commitment and energy that goes into their practices and competitions. I’m no stranger to this reality. School has begun, and I’m now officially fulfilling my “football and tennis dad” duties. My kids love playing sports and being on their teams. I love watching them play.
Excitement can fuel a program and drive it to new heights. The excitement about sports gives us, the fans, something to talk about, to share, to cheer, and to celebrate. Our kids work so incredibly hard, and we get to share in the fruits of their labor. It fills my heart to watch them succeed, and it reminds me that we have the greatest kids on the planet who work hard, achieve, and “Level Up” with hearts as big as our great state. I could not be more proud of them.
If you have not experienced the pride and pageantry of a Texas high school football game, bring your family to one of our games this year. We start tonight; my own #55 will be playing for WHS at Wylie Stadium. Kickoff is at 7:30. If you’re able, come early and watch a volleyball game. They typically begin at 5:30. And we don’t stop there. We also have tennis, cross-country, and golf. No matter what sport you like, chances are, we have it.
Finding the Next Game
Rank One Sport software is an all-in-one solution created to save fans, trainers, and coaches valuable time. Click on the link below to find your favorite team’s schedule.
Marching Bands + Drill Teams + Cheer = Awesomesauce!
Win or lose during football, East and High have NEVER lost halftime, baby! If you haven’t experienced a Texas high school marching band, you are in for a treat. Words don’t do justice in painting the picture of how extraordinary our kids are. Our bands are big, loud, and just simply amazing. How big are they, you ask? They’re so big that they require as many as eleven buses, one eighteen-wheeler, three twenty-foot trailers, and two box trucks for just ONE of these bands to travel to a game. Hey, everything is bigger in Texas, right?
If you’re interested in learning more, check out their websites:
Clear Eyes, Full Heart, Can’t Lose
For our Friday Night Lights beginners, we thought you might need a tutorial. “Friday Night Lights” was a television show based on a novel by the same name. During the writing of this blog, many people insisted I include a note about the show and book to encourage newcomers to familiarize themselves with the greatness of the story. It encompasses the pride we feel on the field and on the court; the battle cry “Clear Eyes, Full Heart, Can’t Lose” embodies the grit, the determination, and the passion that we value in Wylie ISD. It represents our champion hearts.
Each evening around 6:30, after hours of schoolwork and practice, my son comes home, eats his dinner, does his homework, and heads to bed. The following morning, Cal is back at football practice by 6:45 to do it all over again. After one of these long weeks, I asked, “Why do you do this?” He explained, “These guys are family; I can count on them.” “Coach Howard counts on me.” His response said nothing about football. Nothing. These kids get it; it’s more than sports or band. It’s family. Our hearts are full, so we can’t lose.
What Drives Winning?
In his book, What Drives Winning, sports performance expert Brett Ledbetter explains that “winning” is grounded in positive input, support, and encouragement. In short, our kids need us to be their biggest fans. Listen to your children, and act as a sounding board. Want to win? Start by hugging their necks and encouraging them, the Wylie Way!
Hug the Coach?
Nobody works harder, wants to win more, AND needs our kids to be successful more than our coaches. Below is a short video and our reminder to fans that encouragement and support means a lot to coaches. It means a lot to their families that may be sitting beside you, too. We appreciate the respect you show to our coaches and their families. Thanks in advance for your support.
Go, Raiders! Go, Pirates! Let’s do this, Wylie ISD! Welcome to Friday night lights, the Wylie Way! Clear Eyes, Full Hearts, Can’t Lose!