Mark Yost is the author Varsity Green: A Behind the Scenes Look at Culture and Corruption in College Athletics. But back in late September, he was more interested in a high-school game: Plano vs. Allen, which the Eagles won by the score of 30-13. Yost wasn't really there to see the game -- well, not entirely. He made the trek on behalf of The Wall Street Journal to see why Allen's building that $60-million stadium set to open in August 2012.
Yost writes in a piece that'll appear in tomorrow's paper that he was all set to hate the very idea of it. But then, an early Christmas miracle. Let's skip to the end:
I came here expecting to find a symbol for all that's wrong with youth sports in America. But I went away feeling just the opposite, mainly because Allen is so genuine. Texans really do live and die for high-school football. The game against Plano was a scene straight out of Friday Night Lights, complete with cheerleaders, a rousing marching band and rabid fans. It was a slice of Americana.
In short, the people of Allen are willing to pay $60 million for a high-school football stadium. And they're not shortchanging academics to do it. In my view: No harm, no foul.
Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.