RISE Up: Chicago school gets an upgrade

October, 4, 2011
10/04/11
3:49
PM ET
If you're a fan of high school sports (or happen to have a live, beating heart), check out ESPN tonight, when the "RISE Up" series features an episode centered on Dyett High School. Dyett's athletic facilities were among the worst in the state, and many athletes were transferring to other schools, as detailed in this ESPNChicago story:
There was uncertainty in the Dyett football program with a change in coaches. Phillips also offered better uniforms, equipment and facilities. The reasons to leave Dyett outweighed those to stay from a football perspective.

A number of Dyett players did that math and decided to transfer.

“Our quarterback now plays for Phillips,” Dyett athletic director Clarence Smith said. “One of our bigger linemen transferred to Phillips. Four starters left for Phillips because of lack of facilities, lack of equipment. Everyone lost faith in the school.

“It’s frustrating. You want to build a football program. Any high school wants to build a football program. I think we were on our way.”

Over the summer, "RISE Up" teamed with students and the local community to renovate Dyett's athletic facilities, and ESPN cameras captured everything. There are some great stories in this episode, and the transformation is incredible. The episode starts at 6 p.m. tonight.

Check out the video clip below to see how the Dyett students showed their appreciation.

Click here for more info on the "RISE Up" series.

Mike Grimala is an associate editor for ESPNHS. Follow him on Twitter at @MGrimalaESPN »

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