MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A Memphis football team spent this season practicing hard and scrapping for wins, but most nights, games didn’t turn out in their favor. That’s why we decided to Pass It On to the players and coaches at Kingsbury High School.
There’s one more game left in the season, and the Kingsbury High School football team is hard at work even though the school hasn’t had a winning season in 13 years. The scoreboard doesn’t reflect it, but this team is unbeaten in spirit.
Jennifer Turnage saw Kingsbury’s determination when they came to Munford to play her son’s football team, and it moved her to contact WREG to Pass It On.
“I hope that it goes to something that they value and will find great joy in because it really warmed our heart to see them play and just never quit,” Turnage said.
We counted out $1,000 and headed to the practice field. Jennifer explained to the team why we were there.
“So proud of you guys because you showed just so much, no quit. I mean, grit and grind, like there’s not many of y’all. To play both sides of the ball, nonstop. And, no matter what, y’all kept a good attitude. We were just inspired in the stands,” said Turnage. “It really was inspiring, and I just want you to know that even though you don’t think, people are watching. We’re watching, and you doing the right thing pays off, maybe not the same day, but in time it always does.”
The team plays through obstacles every week. There are just over 20 players on the roster, meaning most play offense and defense and are on the field the entire game without rest.
They don’t have a home field, so they have to rent school buses and pay weekly transportation fees to get to games. Kingsbury High’s budget paid for the reconditioning of their helmets, and Rhodes College donated practice uniforms, but the wish list for the Pass It On money is still long.
They want to see some improvement, and they are. They won the first game of the season last week. What made it even sweeter was it was Homecoming.
“We got a lot of naysayers trying to get them to do other things and whatnot, and I tell them all the time, y’all got something going for yourselves,” said Coach Jeran Burns. “It’s a lot of these guys wish they were in your position, but they’re not going to tell you that. They’re going to try and tell you to pull you away. Just keep doing it. It will pay off.”
They are hyped up about the last game against Overton. Coach Burns is hoping after seeing this year’s team fight through the odds, he can recruit more boys to join the team next year and maybe get more support from the community.