SIDELINE OBSERVATIONS: The wait for football is over

Published: Tuesday, August 20, 2013 at 08:26 PM.

The best way to describe Phillips is old school. Phillips, who also played safety on defense, sported a scar across the bridge of his nose from where his helmet constantly came down when he made a tackle or took on a tackler.

Coaches often talk about players with the will to win, those who can carry a team; Phillips was — when he wanted to be — that kind of player.

Four years ago, Crestview opened the season in the Kickoff Classic against a team from Santa Rosa County that is near and dear to my heart: my alma mater, Gulf Breeze. That night, freshman safety Tyler Henderson gave fans a glimpse of what he would do the next four years.

Henderson intercepted the first Dolphin pass that came his way and returned it for a touchdown. Only injuries could keep Henderson off the field during his playing days. Henderson is now at Florida Atlantic University, where he's fighting for playing time as a true freshman.

I've learned that each season presents a set of memories all its own. No two teams, no matter how similar, are ever exactly alike. Each generation has memories unique to that time and place.

A few years ago I did a story on the legacy  Donald Griffith and his family made to Baker football. Donald was the first of three generations to play for the Gators. He was a lineman on one of Baker's teams in the 1950s.

Donald's son, Warren, played for the Gators in the mid-1970s and Warren's sons, Drew and Ben, followed the family tradition. I covered the two younger Griffiths.

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