Journal Express, Knoxville, IA

Sports

August 29, 2013

October Chills

(Continued)

Knoxville —

After the team captains get everyone together for a few words they'd rather not share with the coaches, everyone heads to the sideline for kickoff. Now is when you shift from preparation to execution. You may have scripted the whole first series, but now it's time to perform. No more “Number 1 O” vs. “Scouty D”. This is your best vs. their best; your strongest vs. their strongest, your thoroughbreds vs. their Clydesdales. The kicker leans back as he waits for the ref to blow his whistle. You see the whole team hoisting their helmets as they wait for the loud "thud", and then it starts. The chaos and frenzy of a sideline during a game is difficult to describe. Coaches signaling in plays, fixing equipment, hearing about injuries, grabbing players by the collar as they shove them onto the field while the "get back guy" fights a losing battle to keep the players behind the white line.

The sights, sounds, smells, looks and emotions of a high school football game are difficult to comprehend unless you've experienced it, and once you do it can be like a drug. You crave the excitement, challenge, risk and thrill of being a part of something the whole town cares about. It's seriously something every coach waits 9 months for.

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