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More Than Just a Game in Rose City

November 7, 2017

Football means more here in East Texas. If you drive around town before a big game, it’s all you’ll hear people talk about. You’ll hear player’s names spoken with awe, like they’re superstars. And around here, they are. You’ll see writing on cars and signs on every building. It seems every direction you turn, you can’t escape one fact. Friday night means everything. Because when Friday night rolls around, and you hear that haunting, echoing boom of the stadium lights bursting on, you look around, and it seems like the whole town is here.

But months before the lights of Friday night beam down, young men in Tyler rise before the sun. They put on their shoulder pads and get to work. There are no screaming crowds, no gleaming jumbo Tron. There’s just the dirt, the heat, the blood, and the sweat. They leave everything out on that field in the dog days of summer.

Why? To be the best.

More than 10,000 people show up every year for John Tyler vs. Tyler Lee. This game means everything to the town. Grandfathers, fathers, and now their sons have played in this game. It runs in the blood of the people in Tyler. They either bleed red, or they bleed blue.

But this game is all about community. The two teams share their football field. Both team’s logos are painted on that field. Despite the differences between the teams, one thing matters more than the game: the town of Tyler and its citizens. Not to say this rivalry is friendly, not by a longshot, but when the game is over, and the stadium lights click back off, players and parents and fans of both teams will be fellow citizens of Tyler, Texas.

Valvoline Instant Oil Change is committed to working hard every day to be the best in Tyler, Texas. It takes hard work. It takes blood, sweat, and tears to be the best and to be your hometown quick lube.


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Each fall for over a century, high school football has been the centerpiece for families and communities on Friday night. In 2004, iHigh, Inc. created the Great American Rivalry Series to celebrate this uniquely American sport and the cultural phenomenon of “Friday Night in America.” The Series shines the spotlight on top high school football rivalries across the nation, where long-standing traditions are valued, expectations are sky high, and followers are committed.