The Hightower High School football program fielded its first varsity team in 2000, but in just nine seasons, the school has graduated some great players -- two have played in the NFL -- and made the playoffs seven times.
This year, however, is the first time the team has advanced to the state championship game, and the first time a Fort Bend ISD team has made it this far since 1991. Still, outside of the high school, finding a central community of fans going nuts about the team is tough.
"When you get out in suburban areas, with as many schools as we're building out here, they kind of lose their identity a little bit," Terry Priest, the assistant athletic director in Fort Bend, tells Hair Balls.
There's plenty of piling on the Hightower bandwagon, however, according to Priest. "I run into people at basketball games, and they may live in Sugar Land or out in Richmond, from Austin or Travis or Bush [high schools], and a lot of people are supporting Hightower," he says. "I wouldn't call it a football school, but they're very good in athletics."
Hair Balls hasn't heard of anything big planned for the team before the game, except a pep rally scheduled for Friday afternoon at the high school. Hightower's championship game against Allen, a Dallas suburb, starts at 7 p.m. on Saturday at Reliant Stadium.
-- Paul Knight
Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, 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 Houston with no paywalls.