Preparing for battle

By Joe Duty | Published Thursday, October 7, 2010

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Messenger photo by Joe Duty

An old saying in Texas is “If you don’t like the weather, wait 10 minutes.”

Best laid plans come undone. Expected outcomes turn to dust or drown under clouds. Just like the weather of the North Texas rolling prairie, a chaotic energy rules rivalry games.

Our roaming photographer captured this image during the grueling preseason ritual known as two-a-days in late summer.

The overexposed image creates an ethereal realm set apart from the physical hard-knocks of the gridiron. The hope of winning it all burns bright as the breaking day as players and fans await the season opener.

A Decatur Eagle kneels like a Far East warrior monk in the dawn light. Early morning calisthenics appear like a religious exercise as his fellow teammates follow suit.

On Friday, the reality of District play sets in. Preparations fade into memory.

Most people figure the Bridgeport Bulls will win again in the epic Battle of the Big Sandy Friday. Seventy-six percent of voters in an online poll last Friday picked the Bulls to stampede to victory.

But those close to the game know it’s best to throw out the records and disregard the stat sheets when these cross-county foes face off beneath the lights.

Chaos rules this rivalry. If you don’t like the weather, just wait 48 minutes.

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