Greenville High football success not a coincidence

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 22, 2006

State championship rings flashed in our community in 1994 when the Greenville High School Tigers won the 5A state playoffs.

The next year, the Tigers enjoyed a 10-win season, the last 10-win season until this year.

As a matter of fact, the Tigers have not had a winning season the past two years, quite unlike the winning tradition that had been a part of our football program.

So, how have we moved from a season of 1-9 last year to a season of 10-2 this year?

How have we made it to the third round of the state playoffs?

First of all, thank God.

After that, there are many positive contributing factors.

Head Coach and Athletic Director Bryant Vincent has been nothing short of a miracle worker.

His positive attitude, high expectations, demand for discipline on and off the field, and work ethic combined with his knowledge of the game and selection of other outstanding coaches have been the key ingredients in our formula for success.

But that formula for success has been enhanced by Superintendent Mike Looney and our school board who really do &#8220whatever it takes” to support our academic and athletic programs.

Our most recent example of support took place a couple of weeks ago when we needed additional seating to host the first round of the playoffs.

Mr. Looney had bleachers moved to Tiger Stadium from other schools in the county and purchased additional bleachers for the system so we could host the playoffs and have home field advantage.

Another ingredient has been the support from the Tiger Pride Booster Club.

They have been critical in meeting the financial needs of our football program.

However, more importantly than meeting financial obligations, they have given emotional support to coaches and players.

I am significantly partial to the teachers and staff at Greenville High School and thank them for their support of our players on and off the field.

These folks prepare our young people to go to college, to go to work, to be successful.

Most of our players will not play football after high school.

Brain power, not brawn, will sustain them.

The work of our teachers is immeasurable in the lives of our young people.

In addition, our community has been an ingredient in our success.

Our stadium has been filled to capacity, often overflowing, this season.

And our supporters have not been mere fair-weather fans at home, but have traveled many miles to support our team.

The crowd making the long drive to Pleasant Grove Friday night was awesome.

I believe we matched or exceeded their home crowd.

Thanks for making that trek to support our young people.

How ‘bout them Tigers?

Of course, they are the reason we are celebrating.

These young men have pumped weights, run sprints, and studied plays to exhaustion.

They practiced when it was hot and humid.

They practiced when it was cold and wet.

Then, they practiced some more.

They have been knocked down and some knocked out.

They have had bumps, bruises, fractures, dislocations, and breaks.

And, they practiced some more.

They have tasted defeat and savored victory.

They are TIGERS!

And what is a football game without cheerleaders and the band?

Thanks for your huge commitment of time and energy.

You rock!

To our students, coaches, superintendent, board, teachers/staff, and community, a heart-felt thank you!

See you for round three of the playoffs on Friday night at Tiger Stadium!

Dr. Kathy Murphy is the Principal at Greenville High School.