This week's edition of When In Texas features one of the most storied rivalries in high school football, the Odessa Permian vs Midland Lee game. Played annually since Midland Lee opened in 1961, the rivalry was at its fiercest during a 20-year stretch from 1980 to 2000, when both schools were among the top state championship contenders each year and the game had serious playoff implications. During that stretch, Permian won the state title four times, with Lee claiming three championships and each school earning an unofficial national championship title. Since then, neither school has had the success they became known for and the rivalry became a lopsided affair, with Permian winning seven of the last nine games, while the Rebels dominated the Panthers during the previous 11 meetings, winning 10 of them.
The game is still the most important on both schools' schedules and still captures the imagination of people from Midland, Odessa and all over the state. Thanks in part to H. G. Bissinger's "Friday Nigh Lights" book and the movie it inspired, the Lee-Permian game is one of the most easily recognizable match-ups in the state.
The Panthers, known popularly as "Mojo" after the chant started in the late 1960's, count themselves as one of the elite programs in the state, with six state titles at the state's highest classification, seven undefeated seasons, close to 500 wins and two national championships to boast about. While the Rebels have not had the historical success of Permian, they proudly count a national championship, three state titles and multiple NFL stars among their accomplishments.
Week 1: Woodlands College Park vs Pearland
Week 2: Mason vs De Leon
Week 3: West Rusk vs Sabine
Week 4: El Paso vs Jefferson Silva
Week 5: Katy vs Katy Taylor
Week 5: St. Anthony vs St. Stephen's
Week 6: Lufkin vs Whitehouse