Longview, Texas (KETK) — Bring on the tailgating, face painting, pep rallies, halftime showdowns, cookouts, and packed stadiums. Hometown pride and the annual battles-in-the-trenches are back as high school football returns with a new season and these classic matchups.
The 2013 Great American Rivalry Series presented by the United States Marine Corps and Hibbett Sports travels to Longview, TX on September 20th to highlight one of the most heated rivalries in the country: Longview vs. Lufkin.
This year marks the 10th anniversary for the Great American Rivalry Series, an elite schedule of football contests across America selected due to their unique and long-standing traditions and rabid fan support. The series will cover 38 states and 68 cities throughout the high school football season, celebrating the schools, their teams, student-athletes, and fans.
Series founder Rick Ford notes that, “With its traditions of family gatherings, bonfires, and pep rallies, high school football has brought together communities to watch their teams compete for more than a hundred years.”
This is a game that certainly deserves celebration and national attention. The Longview Lobos and Lufkin Panthers will take the field for week number five of the Series’ 10th year. Over 10,000 fans are expected to pack the stands at Longview High School to witness this classic East Texas showdown between these long-time rivals.
GreatAmericanRivalry.com provides fans with a gateway of complete coverage for their favorite rivalry games, past and present. Previews will be posted throughout the season with details of the teams and the history of the rivalries, and after the game, fans can look through photo galleries and read the recap.
From hundreds of annual rivalries, the Longview - Lufkin game was selected as one of the top 100 must-see match ups for the 10th Annual Series. These teams, separated by 93 miles of US 259, meet each year in a rivalry that goes back over 70 years. Longview took the 2012 meeting (45-14), though lopp-sided scores are not common. Out of the last 17 meetings, 15 were decided by two touchdowns or less. Lufkin will be hungry as they try to prevent Longview from winning three straight in the series and hold onto the winning side of the series record. Longview's win last year put them one game away: 35-34-4.
The winning team earns year-long bragging rights, but the coveted Great American Rivalry Series Champions trophy, presented on field by the Marines, is icing on the cake for a sweet victory. The game’s Most Valuable Player will be named, and the Series also awards the top student-athlete from each school a college scholarship to the school of their choice.
For many seniors, this will be the climax of their high school athletic careers. For two alumni at each game though, the spotlight will shine again as they are inducted into the 10th class of the Great American Rivalry Series Hall of Fame during a halftime ceremony, honoring their past performance in these classic rivalries.
“We are excited to partner once again with the Great American Rivalry Series,” said Leroy Pennington, Marketing Specialist AC/S Recruiting United States Marine Corps Eastern Recruiting Region, Parris Island, SC. “The elite status of this Series fits perfectly with the Elite Warrior brand of the Marine Corps and we are proud to stand alongside these outstanding young athletes.”
The Great American Rivalry Series emerged from a desire to celebrate the uniquely American cultural phenomenon of high school football. For a decade, the series spotlights classic gridiron clashes where expectations are sky high and die-hard fans abound. The atmosphere is rare and for those playing, coaching or attending, it’s a truly Great American Experience.