Sportress of Blogitude

Of course it is: Texas high school nearing completion of $750,000 Jumbotron (pic)

(a rendering of how the Jumbotron will look upon completion)

As the saying goes, “Everything’s bigger in Texas,” and given that high school football is worshiped and revered in a manner more befitting a statewide religious movement there, of course that credo carries over into the sport.

Which makes the news that a Texas high school located near the Louisiana border is nearing completion on a $750,000 Jumbotron for its football stadium hardly surprising. Well, maybe a little bit, but given that this ginormous scoreboard is being installed in a high school football stadium in the great state of Texas, where the stars at night are big and bright, well, it is at least not mind-blowing.

According to reports, the football program at Carthage High School is putting the last touches on what the school says is largest scoreboard screen in school sports.

A tale of the tape:

  • Video screen: 26 feet by 44 feet — almost 1,200 square feet — and weight of 10,000 pounds
  • Entire scoreboard: 50 feet by 58 feet and weight of 47,569 pounds
  • Video screen contains 775,000 LEDs
  • Entire scoreboard contains 815,000 LEDs

The price tag on this exercise in ostentatiousness? A walloping $750,000. All for the school’s 6,500-seat Bulldog Stadium, which, while a relatively large seating capacity for high school sports — except for in Texas — is still a large chunk of change to throw down.

Even though Carthage’s football program is an extremely successful one — Texas’ 3A state champions in the years 2008, 2009 and 2010  — reactions by the town’s residents have been mixed at best, at least according to the smattering of opinions gathered by news-journal-com:

“I think it is awesome to have one,” said Carthage High School student Mia Scott.

“They’ve earned it; that’s for sure,” said Gabriel Jimenez, manager of Hibbitt Sports in Carthage.

“It is an extreme waste of money,” Janna McBride said while shopping Tuesday at HEB.

Another shopper, Dennis English, echoed McBride’s sentiments, saying “It is just a lot of extra money that does not need to be spent. It ain’t about the kids; it’s about pleasing the adults.”

Despite the naysayers articulating their nays, it’s too late to turn back now, as the school will debut the behemoth on Aug. 31, when the Bulldogs take on rival Gladewater. It should be a sight to behold, that’s for sure. Extravagant? Sure. Could those funds been put to better use, like buying new textbooks about Creationism? Darn tootin’. But we’re talking Texas high school football here. Pardner.

[Prep Rally]