by Matthew Hochberg
George Mason High School’s football team fell to 2-7 this season on Friday, Oct. 28, losing 42-24 to Madison County High School in their final away game of the season.
The Mustangs, who had one of their best all-time seasons last year, not only getting into the playoffs but winning the first postseason game in Mason history, have certainly struggled in 2016.
“Each year, each team is different. We’ve had some injuries. We’ve been playing a lot of kids who have been doing things they’ve never had to do. It’s some of their first true seasons on the varsity level, and they’re learning what it takes,” head coach Tony Green said.
“We’ve had injuries and the backups have been playing a lot,” senior running back Dustin Green said. “We just keep making a lot of little mistakes.”
Sometimes, though, there are other storylines at play rather than just wins and losses. This season is one of those times.
While this Friday, Nov. 4 against a playoff-bound Central High School squad will just be coach Green’s last high school game of the season, it will be Dustin Green’s last high school game of his career – and the last time he will ever be playing for his father.
“It’s definitely going to be hard. I haven’t given it much thought, but talking about it now, it’ll be hard,” the four-year varsity player said. “We’ve built up a relationship. I’ll be on the field and he’ll be on the sidelines, and we can just communicate from having that relationship.”
But Green isn’t hanging up the cleats just yet. The electric offensive player currently has an offer from Bryant University in Rhode Island and will be heading to the University of Richmond on Saturday after his last game in his Mustangs uniform for a visit there. He is also receiving interest from Lafayette College and James Madison University.
“Bryant is pretty far away. If they are the only school that offers me, I would be more than happy to go there. But I still have visits to make, we’ll see. I like all four of them,” Green said.
The elder Green, who has coached his son since he was in elementary school from the benches of basketball gyms to the sidelines of football fields, doesn’t know how he will react come the final whistle of the fourth quarter on Friday night.
“As a coach, you hate to see any player leave. But I’ve never gone through this. It’ll be different. It hasn’t hit me yet,” he said.
“We’ve had a good, long run,” the running back said. “It’s kind of a weird feeling. But it’ll be kind of a relief… I’ve never been able to go home and complain about the coaching before,” Green said with a laugh.