This column represents the thoughts and opinions of Jason Hennington. This is NOT the opinion of the Taylor Press.
It has been a while since I wrote a column about the banners hanging in the Main Street Intermediate (MSI) gym. It’s time to restart the conversation and get things moving.
Over the past few weeks, several things have happened that influenced my decision to write this column.
Something I don’t think people understand is that the banners are not all about me or my brother or the teams we played on. The banners and their significance are about history and Taylor pride.
NBA legend KC Jones passed away a few weeks ago, and I had so many people call or email saying, “I didn’t know he was from Taylor.” He didn’t graduate from Taylor High School, but with his success as an athlete that should be celebrated in his hometown.
I just recently learned more about Chris Lamar, a Duck powerlifter who was breaking records and embarrassing his competition.
Why did I just learn? Because there is not much visible history anywhere. The trophy cases are in the gym, but with the relocation of the entrance, people may not even make it over to the cases.
The most recent home basketball games ended in defeat, some by large amounts, and I wonder if the players have a goal other than to win the game. What motivates them night in and night out to perform at the highest level? Other than winning that game or winning district, what are they striving for?
The banners represent a culture of Taylor athletics and tell a story to anyone who visits the school. And I’m not just talking about basketball. The banners include track, volleyball and cross country.
The track records are also up in the MSI gym. Some of these records were broken by other Taylor athletes or may still stand today. These things need to be available to current and future generations to know what kind of culture they come from, and what kind of culture they should aim to build up.
There are too many great athletes to leave Taylor and be successful to not have something recognizing them and telling visitors, “Taylor breeds winners.”
The talking step is over. It’s time for action. Athletes – former or current – the district and the community should try to come together to get the banners moved or replicated and updated in the current gym.
The Taylor girls’ team won big Tuesday night, and their game was played in the MSI gym. Now I’m not saying the banners motivated them to play better, but I don’t have anything to prove me otherwise.
I think an old school night where games are played in MSI at least once a season is another good way to connect the past to the future.
I’m going to get off my soapbox now and take my family to this water circus. Should be interesting.
“When you talk about the past. That’s all in the future.”
- Kennan Thompson (as Suge Knight), SNL skit