U.S. Military best kept secret. They started play with handed down uniforms and have dominated American football in Japan ever since.
Yokota Panthers Football "40 Years of Glory" 1973-2012
In the early 70's they arrived on what was referred to as the "Freedom Bird", in years of late its known as the "Patriot Express". U.S. Serviceman and their families arrive at Yokota Air Base in Japan via contract airlines. And for a brief time in their life, Yokota will be home to these families. Little do they know that their dependent children who may attend Yokota High School join a legacy, if not a dynasty of Yokota Panthers Football. A Yokota win is shared by all, not just the players and coaches, but the Yokota Family.
The Yokota Panthers have a storied tradition of winning football since the school opened in 1973. The Panthers went undefeated in league play its first 4 years, and won four Kanto Plain championships. The accolades have continued over the past 39 years with 30 of 38 Kanto Plain Championships, 12 of 13 DODDS Japan titles, a 10 year Kanto Plain Championship streak, 5 of 6 Rising Sun Bowl Championships, 39 game win streak, and more. As Head Coach for the last 13 seasons, Tim Pujol has over 100 wins since taking over in 1999. Most recent, Tim Pujol and the Panthers won the 2011 Far East Division 1 Championship 34 - 6 over the Kubasaki Dragons of Okinawa.
The video above is just a small look at what will be in the finished hour long DVD. The documentary will also tell why YHS was built, and the influx and exodus of dependents from the surrounding base closings. Film will include film footage/photos of cheer, band and ROTC.
This Story Needs to be Told
I lived at Yokota when the high school first opened. I did not graduate from YHS, but I did attend Yokota Middle school for 7th and 8th grade, and Yokota High School for 9th and 10th grade. I am a YHS Alum. Most may know me as the President of the Yokota High School Alumni Association (2004 - Present). The alumni association was formed in 1993.
The Yokota Panthers football story needs to be told, but not just for the coaches, the players, the faculty, and the students who attended YHS, but for all those who have lived and experienced Yokota.
I have already started on this documentary. I have photos, film, video, 300 pages of Stars and Stripes articles from 1973 - 2011, and radio broadcast. The reels of 8mm film needs to be digitally scanned. Most important is the coaches and players to be interviewed. I have coaches and players across the U.S. to interview. Time and expenses include, lots of editing, narration, music score, printing of post cards/posters, travel, and other related expenses.
OK...So how can I be a part of this?
1. Donate to our Kickstarter Campaign. Any amount helps of course-- and at the $35 donation level, you get a copy of the documentary dvd, a poster, and your name in the "Thank You" credits.
2. Spread the word to your friends, family, classmates. Anything you can do to help connect us with fans is incredibly appreciated. Something as simple as a Facebook post or a Tweet with a link can go a long way.
3. Follow me on twitter as I visit and interview former Yokota, Zama, Yohi, ASIJ, and Kubasaki coaches and players across the country.
You're gonna do this for only $5,000??!?!
I wish! The $5,000 will get the project in high gear and offset some of the start-up costs. Actual costs (gas, scan/digitize film, additional film, music score, additional production, etc.) will be substantially higher--so any amount you can contribute will help.
You can own this one hour dvd which will contain interviews with coach Morris (1973 - 1978), Blevins (1979 - 1989), Pujol (1999 to present), players from different years, game films, pictures and more for the $35 pledge.
Many thanks for all your help.
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
pledged of $5,000 goal
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Jun 19, 2012 - Jul 19, 2012 (30 days)
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FRESHMAN: $5.00 or more. "I want to help out". You'll receive our heartfelt appreciation and have the satisfaction of knowing that you've helped to make this project a success.Estimated delivery: Jul 2012
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Sophomore: $10.00 or more. You'll receive a postcard of the documentary poster with our "Thank You" that you've helped make this project a success.Estimated delivery: Aug 2012
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JUNIOR: $20 or more. You'll receive a 18 x 24 poster of the documentary (mailed to you), and your name listed in the "Thank You" credits at the end of the film.Estimated delivery: Sep 2012
Pledge $35 or more
SENIOR: $35 or more. You'll receive everything in the JUNIOR option, PLUS a DVD of the documentary film (dvd mailed to you after completion) This is actually the best, you give a big help by pre-purchasing the documentary on DVD. Once the funding is over the DVD's will cost $45 each(plus Shipping), and you miss out on the poster and your name in the "Thank You" credits at the end of the film.Estimated delivery: Sep 2012
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12 backers All gone!
GRADUATE: $100 or more. You'll receive everything in the SENIOR option, PLUS your name listed in the Opening Credits of the documentary film, and at the end with the other "Thank You" credits.Estimated delivery: Sep 2012