Mac Engel, who is also an adjunct journalism professor at TCU, traveled all over Texas to do the reporting for Pigskin Rapture, his latest book, which was released earlier this month. He examines the Lone Star state’s love affair with football by looking at the role high school football plays in communities.
His travels included Midland, which was made famous by the book and television show, “Friday Night Lights.”
“The “Friday Night Lights” thing is so important to me,” said Engel. “I didn’t realize the recognition football got here until I went there [Midland].”
Reporting for Pigskin Rapture also helped Engel gain entry into the private suite of Dallas Cowboys’ owner, Jerry Jones.
Engel said going into Jerry Jones’ suite was a pretty incredible experience.
“That was really nice of the Cowboys to do that for us,” said Engel.
Engel spoke about writing the book with a small group at the TCU Bookstore. His talk gave insights into his writing process.
“The amount of time you have to worry about a book is much longer than you have for an article,” said Engel, who has written four books on football. “The guy that wrote Catch 22 years on the book. The most amount of time I had was seven years.”
In Pigskin Rapture Engel highlights football’s status in Texas.
“Imagine if you took football away from this state,” said Engel. “We have three really good NBA teams here and they’re fifth, sixth or seventh priority here.”
When Engel is not writing books like Pigskin Rapture and Tony Romo: America’s Next Quarterback, he is a reporter for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, an adjunct professor at TCU, a radio show co-host and writer on his blog, The Big Mac Blog.