In February of 2011 SportsLetter reported on the construction of a $60 million football stadium at Allen High School in Allen, Texas, an affluent suburb of Dallas.
Well, that stadium is finished and tonight Allen HS is ready to host last year's state champion Southlake Carroll, which is ranked No. 1 in The Associated Press' Class 5A preseason poll – seriously, a preseason poll -- according to the AP on SI.com.
The sparkling new Eagle Stadium sports 18,000 seats (including those for the 8,200 season ticket holders), a three-tiered press box, a 38-foot-wide high-definition video screen, an upper deck and corporate sponsors.
And while it's only the fifth largest high school stadium in the state, the New York Daily News reports that “it is the largest such venue to house a single team.”
Said Robert McSpadden, from a high school football website called, naturally, TexasBob.com,
"In a couple of years, someone's going to do something that's bigger and bigger."
Well, Odessa, Texas, (of "Friday Night Lights" fame) has a 19,000 seat stadium built in 1982. Perhaps it's time for a new one.
Meanwhile, Carthage, Texas, just spent $750,000 for a 1,200 square-foot scoreboard supporters say might be the biggest high school scoreboard in the country. As if it's important to keep track of such things.
Although, apparently it is.
Wes Wood, a former high-school football coach and current salesman for Nevco Inc., which installed Carthage's scoreboard, told the Wall Street Journal that,
He estimates that about 70% of his company's business in Texas is with high schools.
"It's a status symbol, you can't deny that," says Mr. Wood. "I can guarantee there's someone out there that is saying 'we can't let Carthage have the biggest in the nation.' "
Find this a little excessive? A little over the top? Oh, that’s right, you’re not from Texas.