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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Johnson: Eagles' biggest loss may be support

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

It's been brought to my attention that I mentioned that Shelbyville Central sophomore quarterback Julian Haile needed 78 yards to reach 1,000 yards passing on the season in my game preview in Friday's Times-Gazette, but I wrote that he needed 88 in the game story Sunday.

I stand corrected. Haile needed just 78 yards.

Shelbyville Central's cheerleaders hold up a huge banner for the Golden Eagles to crash through before a game earlier this season. The cheerleaders provide the Eagles something the community often isn't: support.
(T-G Photo by Gary Johnson)
Haile threw for 87 yards against Maplewood Friday night and has reached 1,000 yards passing on the season.

Not to make an excuse, but my mistake came after working all day, then covering a football game on the road in Nashville and completing my game story around 3 a.m. Saturday.

I apologize and congratulate Haile and the Golden Eagle offense for this accomplishment.

Knowing Haile, he would be sure to give his offensive line and receivers credit.

Speaking of the Golden Eagle football team, they've fallen on tough times.

They enter the last game of the season Friday night against Lawrence County with an 0-9 record and are currently on a 16-game losing streak dating back to the fourth game of last season.

I've recently done some research and am having a hard time determining if Shelbyville has ever had a winless season.

During this losing period, it seems to me that a lot of interest regarding the Eagle football program has been lost.

I won't attempt to determine what the exact problem is but I'm sure that the players, coaches and administration didn't expect to be winless at this point of the season.

I wonder if a visitor driving through town or a newcomer to Shelbyville would be able to tell what Central's school colors are or even determine the school's mascot or nickname.

Friday night high school football in Small Town U.S.A. should be the talk of the town throughout the week with the stands packed with fans for the game.

Wouldn't it be great to see families tailgating across the campus before the game? And what about starting an "Eagle Walk" where the SCHS band leads the football team from the locker room onto the playing field?

What happened to the "GO EAGLES" signs posted across the city? And where has all the blue and gold gone?

Sure, the losing record plays a huge part of the problem, but some of the blame needs to be put on the TSSAA for the zoning of the regions and classifications.

Tullahoma is the only true rival on Shelbyville's schedule.

Even if the Eagles had a winning record, it would be hard for me to believe that a lot of the Shelbyville faithful would be excited about driving to Hickman County to see a game.

For all Shelbyville football fans, both past and present, let's look forward to better days ahead and an awesone football environment at Eagle Stadium.

We all know there are a lot of football traditions in the South, but there's one thing for sure. Traditions aren't traditions until they're started.

Gary Johnson
Point by Point

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