I have a confession to make: I’ve been binge-watching Friday Night Lights, the TV series about high school football in a small Texas town.
“Why in the world are you watching that?” a friend asked. “You don’t even like sports.”
My only excuse is that I like the photography and lighting and it reminds me of the scores of high school football games I covered. I always said I would rather cover high school sports than college or pro games because the players are real. They may have grandiose ideas about getting rich in the future, but on Friday night, it’s all about playing for their team, their school (and to get girls).
High school soap opera
Think of Friday Night Lights as a soap opera set in high school. It’s kind of like Glee, except they don’t break out in annoying singing and cavorting. I hate lip synching, particularly when the actors over-emote and look like a poodle passing peach pits in the close-ups.
Anyway, I scanned this pep rally a long time ago, but held off running it because a lot of the negatives were in really bad shape.
Coach Goodwin wasn’t Coach Taylor
NBC’s Coach Taylor character was a tough, but compassionate coach who managed to turn the role into an 2011 Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series and was nominated for another one in 2010.
As a non-jock, I generally flew beneath the radar of Cape Central’s Coach Goodwin. I didn’t get to see his compassionate side. I shared some of my phys ed experiences earlier.
Narrow ties and white socks era
It looks like white socks and narrow ties were the uniform of the day.
I recognize some folks
I have the luxury of being able to blow up the film like it was a crime scene photo on a TV show. When I enlarge it way, way up, I think I can pick out some of the members of the pep band: David Hahs, Lee Dahringer and John Ueleke. I’m pretty sure Joan Earley is sitting next to the band. You’ll just have to take my word for it. You CAN click on the photos to make them larger, but you won’t be able to take them up as much as I can with the raw film.
The majorettes in the background were part of the Class of 1965, so these were probably taken in the fall of 1964 or early in 1965. I can’t remember when football season ended and basketball started. I don’t recognize the girls in the football uniforms.
If I hurry up and post this, I might be able to knock off the rest of Season 2 before I go to bed.
12 Replies to “True Confessions”
Pic 1. Mike “Belly” Long in front left. Betty Rawlins is the cheerleader.
Picture 1: Keith Kelly, Keith Middleton, Bill Withers, Bob Swain.
#2: John Vogel, John Hodges peeking over John’s head.
I can’t remember going to one of these. If they let us out early I probably went and don’t remember, if it was after school I left, maybe to work or maybe I was at work with COE.
I don’t remember this either, but I should. This was the only time football players got to see majorettes perform. At football game halftimes we were locked away being yelled at, oops, I mean “encouraged” by the coaches.
I am probably seated in the row behind the seniors who are standing up. You can be sure I was wearing my fashionably narrow tie and white socks.
Ken, “Friday Night Lights” had a great story line and fantastic acting, so you don’t need to apologize for getting “hooked.”
I loved “Friday Night Lights” too. The writing was good and so was the acting. I don’t think Tammy (Connie Britton) would have been able to wear those sexy blouses in a real high school, though.
With my early onset “old timers disease” I can’t believe how some of these names come back to me seeing these old pictures. I may misspell a few but I’m close.
Jesse.. that’s Jim Feldmeier (not John Hodges) peeking over Vogel’s head, and I’d swear John is admiring Coach Goodie’s ample bum!
Any way back to Picture #4 of 6. Here’s a good guess at names left to right: SEATED: Mike Friese. STANDING: Lonnie Blackwood, ?, Tom Holt, Louis Ervin, Paul Kitchen, Ron Seyer, Randy Stahley, Charles Dunkin, Lee Roll, Dick Lueders, Mike Grey. BENDING OVER: ?, ?, Jim Owens (if you look over Jim’s back you can see my Flat Top and big Don Riley) STANDING: ? Estes, John Folwell, Jerry O’Connell, Wayne Goddard, Lendel Brennecke. SEATED: young, handsome Larry Johnson, & Bob Young.
Of course as always…. I’m old, burned out, and I could be wrong.
PS: Ironic Historical Note:
The fact that Mike ‘Belly’ Long is sitting in the stands with Betty Rawlins in #1 of 6 instead of standing with the 1965 Central Tiger Football Team is telling. Mike was a good Quarterback and the “Heir Apparent” to graduated all conference Greg “Tick” Brune, however over the summer Mike decided to forgo his Senior gridiron experience. Forcing Coach Goodie to transform Senior Randy “Hands” Stahly (there is a good reason Dr. “Hands” Stahly – the famous Neurologist – didn’t become a surgeon) into a QB – because the Junior “Heir Not Apparent” – ME – was not prepared for prime time. I was 5’10” 138 lbs on my tippy toes and with a 5 lb weight easily hidden and not noticeable in my jock strap. The other Jr. QB “Future Hall of Famer” Mike Schuette (and a few other players) had also taken the year off for participating in an unauthorized pick-up basketball game in the ‘Locked’ Junior High Gym over the summer.
I remember by our senior year the fall of 1965 there were only a small number of seniors on the team. Coach Ken Hargens even asked if I wanted to go out for football. Me, at 135 pounds and 5 foot 10, they were that desperate! I did have gig running cross country and wanted to collect my 4th letter without being killed, so declined to be a football hero. Me and Keith Kelly, Dave Phillips, Mike Ervin, Randy Wright, Lyman Beasly soldered on in Cross Country. I think we finished second in the conference and 3rd in district. Of course. as always, I’m old, burned out and I could be wrong, not like Brune, but just maybe wrong.
Lendel Brennecke did not play football. If he did he would have been good. He was a good athlete and great guy. I did play football. 2nd from left standing next to Lonnie is his good friend Steve Seabaugh.
Brad, you did well. I didn’t even recognize me in the picture…. What does that say about being old… I think I had my brain damaged from Sylvester slamming my helmet on every play in practice.
Of course you are right Mike Bremermann. That is you and not Too Cool Lendel. Got my Bs mixed up and think he was on my tongue because I may have recently heard he passed away. I started to say Mike Seabaugh for Steve Seabaugh and I KNEW that was wrong as I would be dating Mikes sister later that year. Another name that fell out of my brain dust bin right after I pushed publish last time was PHIL BLACKSTINE?? Or close to that – big redish blond guy next to Estes.
All this thinkin gives me a head ache!
…. so I woke up this morning with the name John Mulkey in my head. His mom was a teacher at CHS. I think that’s him standing between Phil Blackston and John Folwell (had a twin sister Joan??)
I, too, was hooked on “Friday Night Lights”. Broke my heart when they didn’t renew the series. It always reminded me of my high school days.
Great pictures of the high school pep rallies, Ken.
Whenever I go to a football game and see the cheerleaders out on the sidelines, I want to run down there and do the cheers with them! Just doesn’t seem fair that they wouldn’t let me join them!
I still have my cheerleader sweater, all my yearbooks and my prom gown!