The Official Student Voice of Copper Hills High School

The Grizzly Growl

Temporary Hype: The Short Life of the Letterman Jacket

Photo by Autumn Lucas

Photo by Autumn Lucas

Portia Price, Sports Editor

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Years from now, a shrine to an athlete’s childhood will hang in the darkness of the basement, the old air hanging heavy and musty in the room. Collecting ages of dust and forgotten memories, a varsity jacket spends decades sitting, watching time pass after its owner graduates high school. One time, this jacket was much more than just memorabilia in the storage room. Back in its prime, a high school student athlete wore this wool jacket with pride. It went with them to Friday night football games, it sat on their shoulders on cold bus rides, it was set proudly on their backs after a region win, displaying the big CH on the front. This letterman has so many memories clinging to it. It’s so much more than just a jacket. Kaylee Butterworth, a junior who lettered in softball adds, “The jacket represents my hard work and dedication to my sport and how proud I am to be a Grizzly.”

Letterman jackets have been possibly the greatest testament of hard work, pride, and determination in a student athlete. They are the largest indication of team pride. A wool green or blue body with white or gray leather sleeves with added patches and pins display achievements in athletics, academics, and activities. The requirements of earning a varsity letter differ from sport to sport. There are many policies, but the general idea is that the athlete has been satisfactory academically, is on the varsity roster, and has met the minimum playing time that a coach calls for. A common requirement in team sports is a set level of participation and playing time, often half of all quarters or innings of a season. In individual sports, the threshold for lettering is generally participation in one half or sometimes two-thirds of matches.

A varsity jacket is a bold indication for team glory. Tyler Oakeson, senior wrestler comments, “A letterman is something I’ve always wanted as a kid. I feel a lot of pride in myself, my team, and my school.”  Varsity jackets have a tremendous significance to the high school athletes that earn them. However, nobody wears these jackets after graduation, so enjoy those short two to three years with it on your back. They’ll be long gone before you know it.

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The Official Student Voice of Copper Hills High School
Temporary Hype: The Short Life of the Letterman Jacket