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Coach pens powerful message to his staff

Bonham (TX) head coach Tony Johnson and his staff endured a challenging season in 2015 with their Purple Warriors finishing the season 0-10. Undeterred, the coaching staff never stopped working.

In 2016, Johnson and his staff saw some fruit begin to emerge from their work. This weekend Johnson and his team found out they made the playoffs. After hearing the good news, Johnson wrote a powerful message of thanks to his staff.

With a mindset (& staff) like this, there is no doubt this program is on the right track. I hope you all enjoy this as much as I did.


I just want to thank these men here (add Anthony Johnson and Mike Upchurch to the mix). What a great summer and season we have had. We have pushed and worked harder than ever. I was asked last night "How do you get kids to start to turn things around?" Well the answer is in the fact that my entire staff came back from last year. Think about it. 0-10 is usually a death sentence to coaches and they will run most of the time to save their careers. It took courage to come back and believe. To love our kids and help them see they could be and do more. There is still so much more to do. There is so much teaching to be had. Learning never stops. Coaches are the ultimate educators. It is never pretty and sometime we fight like brothers and argue, but in the end we love each other and we love what this game teaches young men.

Nothing happens without this group. NOTHING! Each of these men contribute something unique to this team. They work 7 days a week and try and teach kids right from wrong. They wash clothes, dump trash, feed and give of their own resources. They lead Team Breakfasts, Leadership lessons, community outreach, FCA, and the list goes on and on.
Listen to me clearly, some day the lights will go off on the scoreboard. Someday the pads get put up forever. The train stops for all of us and eventually they ask you to get off. Enjoy it men. Soak it in. Football in college is not guaranteed. Life takes over and kicks you in the gut if you are not ready. These men teach those tough lessons everyday.

It can't always be about W's and losses and how much did "my kid get to play" "what about my touches?" There will always be those that think they know more than you guys, yet they lack the desire or courage to do what you do. Easier to talk about you than with you! There is more to this profession than just grab a whistle. You always amaze me when you push through adversity. Every program winning or losing has it. Just last week our district champion head coach told me of some crazy things said to him by angry "Fans".

I have coached for 23 years. Been in bowl games at the college level, coached with NFL coaches and players. Been high on this game and low very very low, but always I knew there was a great purpose. A bigger picture. No amount of what negativity is thrown at us, we keep loving kids. these men make the difference. These men have the hard conversations and make the effort to encourage every day. Check on Grades, council and minister. Hard profession to be in. You need thick skin and a big heart. These men have that. These men have experiences that no common fan has. Men who have been in State Championships, played in college on Scholarship. Men who have coached at high levels etc. Great experiences for our kids. Many years of knowledge. Then to top it off, they really honestly love helping kids get better. They love helping kids become men. The reward for that is seldom felt for many years.

Never one time have I heard one of them say "geez I hope we screw this up today" lol

These guys have passion and Belief. My hat's off to you guys for all the countless hours away from your families and your commitment to Bonham and these boys. If no one else says anything to you. I will. I am grateful for you. Every day is fun to come to work because of you guys. I am blessed to have done this a long time. You chase your dreams and help others become dream chasers. Proud of you men. God Bless you! THANK YOU!