In a 2006 study by USA Football and the Wharton Business Initiative at the University of Pennsylvania, the state of Mississippi was cited as having the best high school football in America. In fact, Mississippi produces more college and professional football players per capita than any other state in the country. However, these two distinctions fall more than 100 yards short of illustrating the true importance of football in Mississippi. High school football is more than just a sport to residents of the Magnolia State. It is a mechanism for teaching right and wrong; it is a platform for preaching the word of God; it is an outlet for escaping farming and pulpwood hauling; it is a source of civic pride and it is a way of honoring your ancestry. To Mississippians, high school football is a necessary obsession.
Gridiron Gold explores the many aspects that make high school football unique in the state of Mississippi. The book reflects the thoughts, stories, and philosophies of many of the state’s greatest coaches, extracted from over one hundred interviews and over twenty-six hundred pages of transcripts. Some excerpts are funny, some sad, and some reflect deep history, tradition, and social change. All are pure football. Pure Mississippi.