I just finished my very rough first draft of my Stamford chapter of the book. So far I have La Marque, Carthage, Port Lavaca Calhoun and Stamford at various stages. 91 pages written and 57,607 words. Seven teams to go. I’m still hoping to have the 1st draft done in the next three months. I will keep this blog informed.
A few interesting points about signing day on Wednesday. By looking on a few websites and talking to a few of the coaches, I’ve come up with at least 35 players who signed football letters of intent from the 11 programs I covered. 11 of those 35 signed D-I letters. I couldn’t find anything on Idalou or Harlingen, so the number could be a little higher.
To put that number is a little bit up perspective, the 86 public schools that play football in the state of Nevada a total of 11 scholarship letters were signed, nine for D-I schools.
Admittedly this is a little bit of an apples to oranges situation. Nevada only has two football playing colleges in the entire state, both D-I, limiting the options for kids here. Also the eleven teams I followed in Texas, while very diverse in size are all outstanding programs that are above average even in the state of Texas.
Finally, the main goal is high school football programs cannot be to get kids scholarships, even at the great programs the chances of getting a scholarship are very small for a kid entering the program. However, I DO think this number says a lot about the quality of the athletic systems in these two states.
Not to denigrate the work done by coaches in Nevada, many do a great job. The system, though is set up to make athletics and all extracurricular activities an afterthought in this state. The great majority of principals and administrators in Nevada could not care less about the quality of their programs; their overriding concerns are test scores and graduation rates, not in building a comprehensive high school in which athletics is a part. This is also reflected by the money allocated for athletics. In Texas between 1 ½ and 2 ½ percent of the academic budget goes to athletics. In Washoe County, Nevada (Reno) ¼ of one percent is spent on athletics. It is a shame that the education system of Nevada and most states invest so little in these programs that do so much good for so many kids.
Congratulations on all the kids that DID sign their letters, it will be fun to watch their progress in the years to come.