Forty years is a long time; it's been that long since the Beggs Golden Demons played for a state title. It’s been 42 years since they won one. They can snap that streak Friday night.
"Man, we're just thrilled to still be here to have the opportunity to be out here,” said head coach Lee Blankenship.
Beggs is 11-1 this year, thanks to a stout defense and first-year quarterback, Dalton Spring, who's thrown for almost 3,000 yards, 26 touchdowns and just two interceptions after playing defensive end a year ago.
"Which is unconventional,” said Blankenship. “Your backup quarterback starting at defensive end, he's a big, strong kid, very physical type of football player.”
"At first, I was like, I didn't know if I was going to be able to do it,” said Spring. “But, I think it worked out for the best."
Now, in a town like Beggs, everything kind of revolves around the football team, and this year is no different. In fact, you don't have to look far to find a connection between the '75 title team and this year.
Sports Reporter Jonathan Huskey: "You guys talk about that at all?"
Wide receiver Nathen Ross: "Every day. Every day."
Nathen Ross's dad, Jaiden Grayson's great uncle and running backs coach Rodney Tate all played for the Golden Demons on the state champ and runner-up teams in the mid-70s.
Some embrace the connection.
"It's an awesome feeling,” said Ross. “It's the best thing ever.”
Grayson said, "I try not to let it get to my head too much, just play, just let it go. People bring it up and I just nod and say, 'Yes, sir.’”
But either way, the Golden Demons want to keep it in the family.
"I am honored to be a small part,” said Blankenship. “I know our kids are honored to be a small part of just bringing that enthusiasm and excitement and a lot of pride to our little town here at Beggs.”