It's been long couple of weeks for local football fanatics and players.
First, Briarwood's amazing season ended in a South Georgia shoot-out. Then, Thomson High bowed out of the state playoffs to Erik Walden and the powerful Thomas County Central Yellow Jackets.
And no one should be ashamed.
There were plenty of tears after each team's season ended. Players hugged each other, embraced their coaches and some sobbed on parents' shoulders.
And, for the most part, the fans still cheered them.
But there are those that would rather grumble about missed tackles, blown assignments and coaching calls than praise teams for exceeding preseason expectations. These fans wrongly believe that success is represented only in victories - any season that doesn't end with a championship banner is a wash.
That's simply ridiculous.
Real fans know that success on the high school level is not measured by records. It's measured by the young men and women who pour their souls into season after season, who mature as players and as people. It's measured by the friendships built on buses. It's measured by students whose route to college runs along track lines, baselines and yardlines.
Simply put, high school sports success is about athletes, not about rabid fans who contort what the games are really all about.