It was the mid-’90s all over again when 60 middle-aged W.T. White Longhorn football players took the field at Alfred J. Loos Stadium this past summer. The athletes ordered matching Nike jerseys and shorts for the occasion. Four cheerleaders chanted V-I-C-T-O-R-Y. Coach Chas Briscoe led the old boys onto the field, congratulating them on the men they had become.
The scene was out of a high school football playbook. “The guys played rough like they were still in high school, and they are so competitive,” says Angela Baird Arredondo, who was a W.T. White Longhorn cheerleader in 1994.
She balanced a fellow former cheerleader on her shoulders during the game.
“There were lots of tumbles, lots of falls, lots of tackles, and it was supposed to be flag football. I cannot believe no one got seriously injured.”
It was current W.T. White athletic director and coach Tony Johnson, along with alumnus Samori Brown, who proposed a “flag-football” reunion as a way to inspire Longhorns from their generation to support the school and its students. They plan to make it an annual event.
Meet some of the reunion-goers, what they were like in high school and how they live now.
Angela Baird Arredondo, ’94
Activities: Cheerleading, drill team, Young Life.
Favorite memory: “I loved our pep rallies because we had so many different spirit groups, different races, ethnicities and religions. Everyone came together, and we all had one focus, which was cheering on our football team.”
Favorite teacher: Coach Briscoe. “He taught health class. He has the most positive energy. He can inspire you, brighten your day and is motivating.”
Favorite song: “Shine” by Collective Soul.
Favorite cheer: V-I-C-T-O-R-Y.
Job: Dallas police officer for the last 21 years.
Family: Lives in the Royal and Marsh area with her husband and daughter, Kate, who is in the sixth grade at St. Monica’s Catholic School.
After high school: Graduated from Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls with a major in criminal justice and a minor in Spanish. Joined the Police Academy in July 1998.
Advice she’d give to her younger self: “I wish that I had been more present in the moment.”
The best part of the flag football reunion: “Seeing everyone. I lost touch with a lot of my high school friends. There wasn’t Facebook when we were in college.”
How she’s changed the most since high school: “I’m a completely different person. This job has completely changed me. There’s been a lot of tragedy during my 21 years, especially with our officers being killed in the line of duty. It’s hard to watch your colleagues murdered.”
Nobody from high school knows: “I was on the TV show ‘Police Women of Dallas.’”
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