Under the Friday Night Lights

In Texas, football is king. It’s something we’ve all heard and know to be true. High school football is a huge part of the culture in Texas, and each game is an event.  But moving to Midland, TX has made me realize that it’s more than just a game to folks in West Texas… it’s a way of life.

From the smallest towns that can barely field squads in six-man football to the largest Class 5A schools, life revolves around football out here. During the season, towns virtually shut down every Friday night. Whether the team is good or bad, stadiums are always at or near capacity.

Pro and College games are indeed spectacles, but high school football is about family and community for these fans. Everyone watches the boys grow up, and they take pride in each young man’s performance. It’s more personal than any nationally televised game; these are their boys representing their town.

The America presented out here is one of football, Oil and God. And those who play it, coach it and watch it have a hard time explaining to people on the outside why it matters so much. To put it simply though, high school football in-and-around the Permian Basin is just… different. The stadiums are bigger, the crowds are louder and the love for the game runs deeper.

These Texans are united by a passion for high school football that never ceases to amaze me. It’s what makes football here unique and incomparable.  And while teams may face harsh criticism at times, the overall support from the community is unwavering.

In West Texas, everyone comes together under the Friday night lights.

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