TALLAHASSEE, Fl. - WTXL — Well, high school football fans, the season has wrapped up for teams in our local area. Let’s not look back at the winners and losers from 2020. Instead, let's focus on what so many high school student-athletes, coaches, administrators, and fans were able to accomplish this season.
We all came into the summer and fall of 2020 just mere months into a global pandemic, not knowing what the future held for high school football all across Southern Georgia and Northern Florida.
There were many times we thought an outbreak of COVID-19 would be the final nail in the coffin.
Some teams had to take month-long breaks between games while holding onto hope that they would still be playing late in December.
Along the winding road we called the 2020 season, these teams made the best of every obstacle in their way.
Brooks County head coach Maurice Freeman says it best:
“We look back on our kids fighting through COVID, fighting hard going through some great days, some bad days, and just listening, doing what the coaches said. And not one day, not one time or one instance did these young people embarrass Brooks County," said Freeman. "I am so proud of them. It’s ridiculous.”
It wasn’t just the Trojans. From Suwannee to Madison County, to Bainbridge and Valdosta, young men, most of whom are not even allowed to vote in the United States, handled themselves with class every step of the way.
They represented their schools and administrations with dignity when no one would fault them for folding up shop completely.
If there's one thing 2020 taught everyone, it’s never to take anything or anyone you love for granted.
“Don’t ever take this for granted. This will never get old. You better take advantage of every opportunity you get," says Madison County head coach Mike Coe.
When the 2021 season rolls around, remember those words. Practice like there’s no tomorrow, and cherish every moment you have on the field with your brothers.
You never know when you may step on a field for the very last time.
It’s been a pleasure for ABC 27 to be alongside you through this rollercoaster of a season. We look forward to checking back in with you all in 2021.