“‘Athletics last for such a short period of time. It ends for people. But while it lasts, it creates this make-believe world where normal rules don’t apply. We build this false atmosphere. When it’s over and the harsh reality sets in, that’s the real joke we play on people’” (Bissinger xiv). “Friday Night Lights” shows the darker side of high school football. Players are taught to play games to win, and thats all that matters. Football players are put under a tremendous amount of pressure, almost enough to be considered unfair. Even though football is a “team sport”, pressure on individual players is unnecessary. Some players have the burden of the team, the city, their family, and their future, resting on their shoulders. These players are put under pressure that is physically and emotionally damaging, not to mention future ruining.
Boobie Miles experiences many types of pressure in this novel. Boobie, the player that carries the football team, has the mentality of a child. He gets angry easily and he’ll throw tantrums when a scenario isn’t going his way. Boobie’s child-like mind set makes him more susceptible to the pressures of being a Permian Panthers football player.
Boobie pressures himself when he makes football his whole lifestyle. Everything in his life revolves around football. Even one of Boobie’s coaches said that without football all he would be is “‘A big ol’ dumb nigger’” (Bissinger 67). Boobie doesn’t see school as a priority, which means he completely relies on football to continue his life after high school. He took “...correlated language arts, a class for students at least two years behind their grade level in english” (Bissinger 150). “He then went on to algebra I, a course that the average college bound student took in ninth grade and some took in eighth” (Bissinger 150). Yet, Boobie took this class as a senior. Boobie’s lack of academic success already put his future college football career in jeopardy. Even though his skill in football was noticed by colleges, most tried to avoid Proposition 48 cases. Boobie knew there was no way he could ever get a nonrestrictive scholarship. “But there was no way he could fulfill the requirements of the NCAA for number of courses needed to qualify for a nonrestrictive scholarship” (Bissinger 65). Boobie thinks that he has to show the college scouts more of his football playing ability so he pushes himself too hard and comes out with a serious knee injury. All Boobie wants is to have a career in football, and now ruins his own dreams. He has made himself his own worst enemy and ruined the only thing he was prepared for in life.
Boobie also experiences harsh pressure from his uncle, L.V. “Some who knew L.V. thought he had pushed Boobie too much, wasn’t living for him as much as he was living though him” (Bissinger 61). Boobie even admits his uncle pushes him too hard (Bissinger 63). L.V. pressures Boobie because he himself never got the chance to play high school football, so now...