JACKSONVILLE, Texas (KETK) — When telling the story of East Texas high school football, it’s hard to find a better centerpiece, than coach Jeff Traylor and his Gilmer Buckeyes.
That is the focus of a new book called Draw the Line, and Friday in Jacksonville, they held an event to celebrate its release.
Coach Traylor was on hand at the Tomato Bowl alongside the book’s author and fellow East Texan, Dr. Hunter Taylor.
Coach Traylor was an assistant in Jacksonville before returning to his alma-mater and leading the Buckeyes to three state championship titles.
The book chronicles the story of the 2014 state-winning team, who dedicated their season to teammate Dez Pollard, who tragically died earlier that year.
Traylor, now the head coach of the UTSA Roadrunners, says he’ll never forget what that team meant to Gilmer, which is why Dr. Taylor knew, it had to be the backbone of his book.
“It means so much, but like the fact that you get to tell a story that’s not only about coaches but players, community members, its a lot of people involved in this stuff,” said Dr. Taylor. “It’s really special to them, so the fact that they trusted me enough to do that means the world.”
“It has forced me to remember a lot of special people in my life that had an unbelievable impact on me, there is no way I would be where I am today without those people,” said coach Traylor. “It just made me stop and remember, I’ve never forgotten them.”
The book tour will continue later this month, stopping in Marshall on July 11th before finishing at the Texas High School Coaches Association convention in San Antonio from July 17th to the 19th.