A Closer Look by Mark Miller – Playoffs Continue!


As we continue on through the playoffs, fewer and fewer teams remain in the Stark County area.  Congratulations and good luck to McKinley, Massillon, Green, West Branch and Malvern as well as all the local teams that competed so mightily this season.  It is a pleasure to cover your teams all season long.  The players, coaches and other team personnel do a great job so we can enjoy watching the games.

But there are many other school people involved in a Friday night football game and this week I want to recognize those individuals. Of course, the on-field participants, like cheerleaders and the marching band are seen and appreciated.  These students and their leaders prepare and practice just as hard as the players and coaches. They bring enthusiasm and excitement to the game that cannot be replaced.  Just think back to the 2020 NFL season when only the teams were in the stadiums, ugh!  It was way too quiet!  

And these groups often go above and beyond to help their teams and home towns. For instance, Sunday afternoon the Pro Football HOF had a Browns-Bengals watch party in the beautiful Nash Family Event Center.  About 10 minutes before kickoff the Canton McKinley Bulldog Marching Band drum corps entered the room and performed a routine compete with dance moves.  The 300-400 fans in attendance loved it, gave a standing ovation and were definitely ready for kickoff.  Thanks so much to Band Director Zachary Taylor, his staff and band members for doing a great job!

Wherever there are students and student groups, you can be assured there are many adults, teachers, coaches and administrators behind the effort.  Thanks for all you do for the young people so us old people can enjoy watching what they do.  

It truly is a team effort and nobody does it better than the Stark County area.  I am proud to be Canton born and bred. I always told my wife this is God’s country and it certainly is in many ways. See you Friday night!