In no small part due to its history, and with a little help from Hollywood, the Texas high school football landscape leaves little to wonder about who many college football fanatics will see on the playing field on Saturdays in the coming years. They call it Friday Night Lights for a reason – because these kids shine week-in and week-out in a state that calls football religion.
There are doubters, of course, reining from California, Pennsylvania, Louisiana, Florida and Ohio – but there are few states in which all colleges come calling to find their next big stars. Weekly, throughout the fall, Rivals.com will publish and update their list of the top 100 high school football teams in the country. This week’s rankings can be found here.
Which Texas schools stack up this year? Here a list of the Texas boys that have made the grade so far this season, 12 of the top 100 high school football teams – the most of any state:
Cedar Hill, Texas
James Madison (San Antonio), Texas
North Shore (Houston), Texas
Hightower (Missouri City), Texas
Stony Point (Round Rock), Texas
Cy Creek (Houston), Texas
Skyline (Dallas), Texas
Trinity (Euless), Texas
In comparison, the other states with multiple teams in the top 100 include: Alabama (2), Arkansas (1), Arizona (3), California (8), Colorado (2), Florida (11), Georgia (6), Iowa (1), Illinois (1), Kansas (1), Kentucky (2), Louisiana (3), Massachusetts (1), Maryland (3), Michigan (4), Minnesota (1), Missouri (1), Mississippi (3), North Carolina (2), Nebraska (1), New Jersey (2), New Mexico (1), Nevada (1), Ohio (6), Oklahoma (2), Oregon (1), Pennsylvania (4), South Carolina (2), Tennessee (2), Texas (12), Utah (2), Virginia (4), Washington (3), and Wisconsin (1).
Perhaps it shouldn’t be surprising, then, that the typical top college programs also come from the top high school football states – Texas, oklahoma (with Texas recruits), LSU (with Texas recruits), Florida, Florida State, USC, and Ohio State.
Truth be told, though – if Eyes Of TX uses their own high school as an example – the kids are simply bred from birth to cherish and learn the game of football. In 6th grade, we began running the varsity playbook – albeit a cut down version – learning the formations, running those plays to perfection, and building out the playbook over the next 7 years of our lives. That dedication and work led to numerous district championships, deep playoff runs, and a state championship in this blogger’s tenure. This is also the same culture in which this blogger’s community, rather than build a new high school to support the growing number of students, decided that it was best to keep the football team together – so they built a 9th grade center instead. This is how we were raised – to be the best, no matter the cost. At the end of the day, we may not have been the biggest, or the fastest, but we had heart, grit and a work ethic that drove us to be successful.
Something to be said for what they feed those kids in Texas – and we’re not talking about the food.