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High School Football Players Erupt When Coach Uses Pregame Speech to Reveal He Defeated Cancer

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I don’t know about you, but with everything that’s going on these days, I’m ready for some good news.

Some relentless news.

Like this — witness Eric Coovert, an assistant football coach at Kingwood Park High School in Kingwood, Texas, as he gave a pregame pep talk that went far beyond football.

“I just want to talk about one thing,” Coovert told his players. “And that’s our slogan from the beginning of this year has always been to stay relentless.

“And you guys know that has meant on the football field, in the classroom, in our lives, in our relationships and against our personal evils.

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“And I gotta tell you something right now — for the last couple of months, you guys have inspired me. You got me going through my own personal evil, and you guys all know that’s cancer.

“And you guys have overcome heat. You guys have overcome obstacles in everyday life. And I wake up and you motivate me.

“I gotta tell you right now because you guys are my family: Your inspiration has made me stay relentless in my battle.

“And I got a call last night from my doctor that I’ve gone 1-0 against cancer.”

His team erupted in cheers at the announcement.

Forget Ted Talks. Forget management textbooks. Forget professional motivational speakers. Coach Coovert covered much more in a simple 42 seconds of a pregame pep talk.

There’s depth of life in what this man is demonstrating to the young men he helps to lead. Note the ongoing theme he taught the players: Be relentless in all areas of life.


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And then, before revealing the news of his own victory, Coovert explained how he’s been inspired by the way his team has worked and how they have helped him in his personal health battle.

How they’ve been relentless.

What’s the old saying? There’s no “I” in team, right? And the coach lived that out, making it all about the team, not himself, and of their relationship as a family.

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Again, he talked about how the Panthers players had motivated him.

Then the payoff: He has won. He has beaten cancer. The loud cheers of his “family” show the love and respect they have for Coovert.

And his pep talk seems to have inspired them: They proceeded to defeat Lee High School in Baytown 21-20.

At 6-2, it’s been a great season for Kingwood Park. But the best has been Coovert at 1-0 over cancer.

Hope it stays that way, Coach. And thanks for showing us how it’s done.

Go Panthers.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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