Saturday's 39-12 win over Wynnewood was the third Ringling state championship that Tracy Gandy had been a part of — one as a player, one as an assistant coach and on Saturday as the Blue Devils' head coach.
In 2003, Gandy coached under his father, Rick Gandy, and Saturday's victory at Boone Pickens Stadium was the team's first title since Rick passed away in 2008.
“Our kids, I know my dad would be proud of 'em,” Tracy said, choking up as he spoke. “He'd be really proud of our kids, as am I.”
In 2005, Tracy Gandy replaced his father, for whom the team's field is named. Rick Gandy was paralyzed in a horse riding accident in 2005, and Tracy served as interim coach until his father's death in June 2008.
WYNNEWOOD'S KNOWLES LIMITED
Wynnewood running back Trey Knowles came into the game as one of Class A's top rushers with 1,795 yards and 27 touchdowns, but he was limited by an apparent injury Saturday.
Knowles, the 6-foot, 215-pound bruiser, finished with nine carries for 30 yards, but had his left hand and wrist taped for much of the game.
KEITH CELEBRATES WITH RINGLING
A week after watching his son's Norman North team fall in the Class 6A state title game, country music star Toby Keith watched the Class A game from the Ringling sidelines.
As the clock ticked off the final seconds, Gandy came over and thanked him for coming, and Keith congratulated him on the championship win.
“I've got a hunting and fishing ranch down there so I know a lot of the families of these guys,” Keith, wearing a Ringling hoodie, said. “It's a great bunch of small-town kids.”
It's not unusual to see a player participate with the band during halftime performances, but it's not necessarily something you expect at a state championship game.
Ringling sophomore lineman Cole Harbin got the best of both worlds Saturday. Not only did his team win the state championship, but he also got to play his trombone with the Ringling band on the Boone Pickens Stadium turf at halftime.