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‘It feels like Cougar football again!’

“It feels like Cougar Football again!!”
Fifteen minutes after the Pulaski County football team jogged off of Saber Field at Jefferson Forest High School on Friday, junior linebacker Tahrick Peak spoke these words when I asked him how it felt to be 4-0. You could see the pride on his face when he said it.
Tahrick, like most of the other members of the team, grew up waiting for their chance to be Cougar football players. They grew up standing at the bottom of the steps on Friday nights as players like Jeff King, Gary Clark, Todd Grantham, Jack Turner and hundreds of others before them walked down those 63 steps to what is now known as Joel Hicks Field. They would wait at the bottom, wearing the jerseys of the Pulaski Red Raiders, the Dublin Packers, the Pulaski Purple Rams, the Dublin Cowboys, the Pulaski Blue Raiders, or the Dublin Chiefs. They were Dublin Middle School Dukes or they were Pulaski Middle School Orioles. Their rec league and middle school coaches told them, “One day that will be you walking down those steps to play here.”
People remember what Cougar Pride is all about. It’s not just about winning, it’s about EFFORT. It’s about not making excuses, and giving it everything you’ve got. It’s about not giving up. It’s about working hard to achieve your goal. It’s about knowing your role as a member of a TEAM, and doing what you have too to make that team successful.
Don’t take this wrong, the Cougar football teams of the past few years have had that same drive and desire. Coach Turner and his staff have always worked hard and put together the best plan they could to be successful, and they have always worked their team hard to get ready for each week’s games. But this team is something different. It just seems like all the pieces are coming together. It just seems like this team is a little bit closer.
When the Cougars got to Jefferson Forest for their game on Friday, senior Nubian Peak knew he wasn’t at 100 percent. It would have been very easy to say “Hey coach, I don’t want to take a chance on getting hurt,” but he didn’t. Several other players were banged up and bruised, and they could very easily have taken a break. No one would have blamed them or said a word to them, but they didn’t. They wanted to do their part for the TEAM. They wanted to help the TEAM achieve it’s goal.
The kids on this team are a very good cross section of our community. There are country boys, there are kids who have never stood in an open field. There are kids who wear Slipknot t-shirts and baggy black pants, and there are kids who won’t wear anything that isn’t from American Eagle. There are kids whose parents have money, and there are kids whose parents live paycheck to paycheck. One thing brings them all together though, and that is the TEAM.
The Cougar fans that came out to the game on Friday are some of the most hardcore in the state. In the past they have came out in ice storms, they have come out in near monsoon rain storms, and they have come out in fog. They’ve come to cheer for the Cougars in the heat and in the cold, at home in Dobson Stadium or they have driven hours at a time across the state.

On behalf of Coach Turner and his team, I would just like to say thank you for that support. If you haven’t been one of those fans that comes out and gets a little crazy on Friday night, let me be the first to invite you. Friday night in Pulaski County is a community event. It’s about the band, the cheerleaders, and the kids. It’s a chance to get out and see friends and cut loose a little. It’s a chance to support something positive.
———
On a final note for this week’s column, I was asked to pass along a message for a long time Cougar supporter who has done his share for years to help out the kids and the program.
On the way back from the game Friday, I got a call from Dan Callahan. Dan is currently in the hospital at UVA Medical Center in Charlottesville. Friday night was the second game that Dan has missed in the entire history of the Cougar football program. He called from his hospital bed for a report. You just can’t keep him away.
Dan wanted to let everyone know how much he appreciates all the support he has received from his many friends in the community since he went back in the hospital. He also wanted to let everyone know that he is hoping to be back in action soon, but for right now he is going to have to take some time to get his health back to where it needs to be.
If anyone would like to send a card or letter to Dan, feel free to bring it by the Pulaski County High School Fieldhouse and leave it with Coach Turner, and I’ll make sure that it gets to him.
Dan knows what Cougar Pride is all about, too. Get well soon buddy, we’ve got an awful lot of chicken and Spam left to eat.

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‘It feels like Cougar football again!’

“It feels like Cougar Football again!!”
Fifteen minutes after the Pulaski County football team jogged off of Saber Field at Jefferson Forest High School on Friday, junior linebacker Tahrick Peak spoke these words when I asked him how it felt to be 4-0. You could see the pride on his face when he said it.
Tahrick, like most of the other members of the team, grew up waiting for their chance to be Cougar football players. They grew up standing at the bottom of the steps on Friday nights as players like Jeff King, Gary Clark, Todd Grantham, Jack Turner and hundreds of others before them walked down those 63 steps to what is now known as Joel Hicks Field. They would wait at the bottom, wearing the jerseys of the Pulaski Red Raiders, the Dublin Packers, the Pulaski Purple Rams, the Dublin Cowboys, the Pulaski Blue Raiders, or the Dublin Chiefs. They were Dublin Middle School Dukes or they were Pulaski Middle School Orioles. Their rec league and middle school coaches told them, “One day that will be you walking down those steps to play here.”
People remember what Cougar Pride is all about. It’s not just about winning, it’s about EFFORT. It’s about not making excuses, and giving it everything you’ve got. It’s about not giving up. It’s about working hard to achieve your goal. It’s about knowing your role as a member of a TEAM, and doing what you have too to make that team successful.
Don’t take this wrong, the Cougar football teams of the past few years have had that same drive and desire. Coach Turner and his staff have always worked hard and put together the best plan they could to be successful, and they have always worked their team hard to get ready for each week’s games. But this team is something different. It just seems like all the pieces are coming together. It just seems like this team is a little bit closer.
When the Cougars got to Jefferson Forest for their game on Friday, senior Nubian Peak knew he wasn’t at 100 percent. It would have been very easy to say “Hey coach, I don’t want to take a chance on getting hurt,” but he didn’t. Several other players were banged up and bruised, and they could very easily have taken a break. No one would have blamed them or said a word to them, but they didn’t. They wanted to do their part for the TEAM. They wanted to help the TEAM achieve it’s goal.
The kids on this team are a very good cross section of our community. There are country boys, there are kids who have never stood in an open field. There are kids who wear Slipknot t-shirts and baggy black pants, and there are kids who won’t wear anything that isn’t from American Eagle. There are kids whose parents have money, and there are kids whose parents live paycheck to paycheck. One thing brings them all together though, and that is the TEAM.
The Cougar fans that came out to the game on Friday are some of the most hardcore in the state. In the past they have came out in ice storms, they have come out in near monsoon rain storms, and they have come out in fog. They’ve come to cheer for the Cougars in the heat and in the cold, at home in Dobson Stadium or they have driven hours at a time across the state.

On behalf of Coach Turner and his team, I would just like to say thank you for that support. If you haven’t been one of those fans that comes out and gets a little crazy on Friday night, let me be the first to invite you. Friday night in Pulaski County is a community event. It’s about the band, the cheerleaders, and the kids. It’s a chance to get out and see friends and cut loose a little. It’s a chance to support something positive.
———
On a final note for this week’s column, I was asked to pass along a message for a long time Cougar supporter who has done his share for years to help out the kids and the program.
On the way back from the game Friday, I got a call from Dan Callahan. Dan is currently in the hospital at UVA Medical Center in Charlottesville. Friday night was the second game that Dan has missed in the entire history of the Cougar football program. He called from his hospital bed for a report. You just can’t keep him away.
Dan wanted to let everyone know how much he appreciates all the support he has received from his many friends in the community since he went back in the hospital. He also wanted to let everyone know that he is hoping to be back in action soon, but for right now he is going to have to take some time to get his health back to where it needs to be.
If anyone would like to send a card or letter to Dan, feel free to bring it by the Pulaski County High School Fieldhouse and leave it with Coach Turner, and I’ll make sure that it gets to him.
Dan knows what Cougar Pride is all about, too. Get well soon buddy, we’ve got an awful lot of chicken and Spam left to eat.

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