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Class 3A football: Communities like Kingfisher, Bethany, Seminole provide the backing to create contenders

by Trent Shadid Published: August 26, 2014
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photo -  Goes with Class 3A story in the high school football preview section. 
Bethany High School  indoor practice facility.  Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman
Goes with Class 3A story in the high school football preview section. Bethany High School indoor practice facility. Photo by Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman

Successful football programs in Class 3A often come with a special bond between the school and town.

Talent and coaching still trumps all factors in winning, but community support can help turn a program into a yearly contender.

Here’s a look at how three of the schools in the preseason top 10 have benefited from that type of backing.

Kingfisher: A winning mindset

In Kingfisher, the defending Class 3A state champions are surrounded by an expectation for success that goes beyond football.

The community and school administration has placed an emphasis on fostering the winning mindset.

“Kingfisher, I think, is a unique community in the sense that the people expect to do well and succeed in everything,” said Superintendent Jason Sternberger. “It obviously shows in football, but that community support goes through all our sports, and FFA, and band, and whatever else. It just bleeds from one activity to the next.”

Over the past 11 years, the Yellowjackets are 125-25 with six trips to the state championship game and two titles.

Jeff Myers has been a major part of the recent success since becoming the head coach in 2004.

“Coach Myers deserves a lot a credit for organizing the way he runs the program,” said Sternberger, the father of defensive end Jace Sternberger. “As kids go through the system and develop, they just continually turn into good players. He also has a good outreach and communication with the parents. That stuff can go a long way.”

Bethany: Top-notch facilities

Bethany High School is part of a tight-knit community surrounded by the metro area.

The unique bond is especially evident on Friday nights in the fall.

“It’s special that we have a small-town atmosphere within our whole school system, yet we’re locked in the heart of the city,” said Bethany coach Reagan Roof. “That’s unheard of today.”

A recent rise in success has helped develop that passion. The Bronchos had a sub-par program in the 1990s, but have turned things around in the past 15 years including a Class 2A title in 2003.

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by Trent Shadid
Copy Editor
Trent Shadid is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma. He was born and raised in Weatherford, Okla., and attended Weatherford High School. Before joining The Oklahoman, he spent two seasons as an assistant wrestling coach at Weatherford High...
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