By Brad Hubbard | @bradhubbard
It’s been 25 years since H.G. Bissinger’s high school football classic ‘Friday Night Lights‘ was published. It has since been turned into a movie, a TV series and has been named one of Sports Illustrated’s top sports books of all time. If you haven’t read it you should, it’s that good regardless of what you think of the author.
Bissinger was recently on NPR’s ‘Fresh Air’ to promote the 25 anniversary of the book. While it is interesting to hear about how the book was written and what happened to some of the players like Boobie Miles all these years later, the interview came off more about Bissinger’s issues than anything else. He sounded like someone who never recovered from his hit book which was his first.
Taking Bissinger’s issues out of the equation, the book itself is truly great. It gave credence to the notion that ‘football is a religion in Texas’, especially when it comes to west Texas. You can drive for miles in the western part of the state and not come across a single sign of life. Then out of nowhere will appear a football stadium that can hold five thousand people and then some.
While the book did spawn a movie and a TV series, neither can compare to the book. The movie changed parts of the story and didn’t touch on the racist undertones. The TV series eventually figured it out and ended up being a pretty good show.
There are still a few weeks left before regular season starts for high school, college and the NFL. Plenty of time to read this book and have a better appreciation for the game of football.