High school athletes deserve our support

High school sports are the essence of Americana. For teenage girls and boys to spend hours every week pushing their bodies to — and in most cases, past — their limits so they can represent their schools on the football field, volleyball or tennis court, track and in the pool is nothing short of heroic.

Whether the student-athlete is trying to earn a college scholarship or just staying in shape, it doesn’t matter. They all deserve respect and community support.

This week marks the beginning of Friday night lights, or as most people put it, high school football season.

This season poses a particular promise for the Bremerton High School as brand-new coach Mike McKnight takes the helm for the Knights. How nice it would be if the residents of Bremerton showed up in full force to support the Knights all through the season, regardless of the record the team racks up.

True, the Knights are in a true rebuilding year and missed their annual summer training camp because they didn’t yet have a coach.

It doesn’t matter.

From what we hear of Coach McKnight, he may be the man to turn the program around.

Last week, he summed up his coaching philosophy on the Patriot’s sports page: “(The football field) is the last place in the world we can train gladiators.”

Gladiators, indeed. And he went on.

“When you are doing something no matter what you are doing, do it the best you can,” he said.

Hoo-rah, sir.

Whether they win or lose, the effort the Knights put forth this season will be honorable, as Knights should be.

It would be great if the community support were honorable, as well.

“I don’t care about wins and losses,” McKnight said. “I care about these guys

After all, football — and all high school sports — is about more than competition. It’s about building character. It’s about hard work. It’s about dedication.

Fill up the seats, Bremerton. Show the Knights that, win or lose,` they are worthy of your respect.

The coach already has ours.

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