‘Friday Night Lights’ Coach Gary Gaines Resigns From Odessa Permian

Friday Night LightsThe Friday night lights in West Texas aren’t going to be shining as brightly any more.

Coach Gary Gaines, the high school football coach who famously led Odessa Permian in Buzz Bissinger‘s 1990 bestseller “Friday Night Lights,” has resigned from his position, according to the Dallas Morning News.

“We’re going to give it to someone else and, hopefully, they can make more out of it than we did,” Gaines said.

The coach went 69-28-1 in eight years at Permian, serving one four-year stint from 1986-89 and his second from 2009-12. Gaines failed to win a district championship in his second turn with the Panthers, leaving it open to interpretation whether the coach was resigning of his own choice or if athletic director Todd Veseley asked the coach to leave.

“It was just one of those things,” Gaines said. “I understand when programs don’t improve sometimes the head coach has to bear that responsibility.”

Bissinger’s book was made into a movie in 2004, when Gaines was played by actor Billy Bob Thornton. The movie was then adapted for a television show by the same name, but did not have the coach as a character.

Photo via YouTube/SpitfireZero

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