On Oct. 1, 1954, the Abilene High School Eagles lost a
football game to the Breckenridge Buckaroos, 35-13, at
Fair Park Stadium in Abilene, Texas.
I was in the sixth grade at the time.
I was in the ninth grade the next time Abilene High lost
a football game, to Dallas Highland Park, in the
semifinals of the 1957 state playoffs.
In the interim, the Eagles won 49 straight games and
three straight state championships, in 1954-55-56, in the
Texas large school Class AAAA division.
In 1999, at the end of the century, the media in Texas,
as elsewhere, busied itself compiling lists of “bests of
the 20th century.” Duly noting the role of high school
football in the Texas culture, The Dallas Morning News
selected a “Team of the Century” in Texas high school
That team was the Abilene High School Eagles, 1954-57.
The streak was a terrific achievement, and “Team of the
Century” quite an honor.
But by the end of the century, even in Abilene, people
only remembered five or six details about the streak.
So I wrote a book. I am a journalist, and a sportswriter
in my soul, and a graduate of Abilene High, where I
played football. The book was a natural thing to do.
Its title is “Warbirds – How They Played the Game,” and
its purpose, as I began the research and writing, was to
restore the details of the 49 games in the streak. The
effort quickly became not only a restoration of the
streak but of the time and place in which the streak
occurred. I wanted the reader to feel as if he or she
was in that time and place, and interested in football
only as a part of the larger history.
I self-published the book this summer, and it has met
with nice response in Abilene and in West Texas, and
lately it is showing some strength across a wider
expanse of Texas. I think it has movie potential, but I
am biased. To have a look, go to
|Grossmont Authors on Exhibit,
and Featured in Web Display
Michael Grant’s new book,
Warbirds, is on display with those of other GC published authors. A
new book display in the Reference Area of the LTRC also
includes photos of the authors already profiled in the
continuing Campus Scene series.
You may also visit the