As the 2014 high school football season moves on to district play, When In Texas is also entering a tougher part of its schedule. This week I visited two homecoming games at two of the most storied programs in the state, the first one being seven-time state champions Katy High School.
While the Tigers' program started in 1939, it was not until the mid-80's and the arrival of head coach Mike Johnston that Katy started enjoying continuous success in the gridiron. Johnston would lead its charges to win the 1997 state championship game, ending a 38-year title drought for the Tigers, along with two more before his retirement in 2004. The Tigers have followed his era with three more titles, leaving them one shy from tying the all-time record of 8 state championships held jointly by Celina and Southlake Carroll High Schools.
During this year's homecoming game, Katy handily beat district rivals Katy Taylor, to whom the Tigers have not lost a game since 1955. Off the field, the scene was highlighted by students wearing rather large homecoming mums and garters, a state tradition that has grown enormously as time passed.
Originally consisting of a single chrysanthemum flower, a boy will present his homecoming dance date with a mum, which is often homemade, to be worn in her chest and she will in return present him with a matching, yet smaller, garter to be worn on the boy's upper arm. The mums have grown from a single flower to elaborate displays of color, sound and sometimes even light, thanks to LED lights. The mums are now a way for students to display their personality and interests while taking part in a tradition as old as homecoming itself.
The second part of this week's post, covering San Antonio's St. Anthony Catholic High School, will come later this week. In the meantime, enjoy the photographs and catch up with previous installments of When In Texas at the following links: