John Curtis Patriots celebrate first national title - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports

John Curtis Patriots celebrate first national title

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© John Curtis head coach J.T. Curtis led his team to their 25th state title and first ever national title (Patrick Semansky/AP) © John Curtis head coach J.T. Curtis led his team to their 25th state title and first ever national title (Patrick Semansky/AP)
River Ridge, La. -

Think John Curtis football, think excellence. 

For the 25th time, the Patriots celebrated a state championship.  But on Monday, a new banner was hanging in the gymnasium -- not only were they the top team in the state, they were also tops in the nation.

"I don't think we ever had a bad practice," said head coach J.T. Curtis, who's guided the Patriots to all 25 titles. "There was never a day when I threw my hat down and said, 'Blow the whistle and start over.'"

Five of seven high school national polls voted the Patriots #1.  But Curtis said state was always the goal, and anything else is just a bonus.

"Like anything else, some things had to go your way," Curtis said.  "Some teams that maybe thought they were better going into the season got beat. We had the big win against Plant, which we pretty much dominated that game. I think that got the national pollsters' attention."

So what does a coach who's won a national title, national coach of the year and his 25th state title do now? Easy -- get prepared for #26.

"It was so interesting to hear Coach [Nick] Saban [of Alabama] talk after his national championship. I'm going to enjoy this one for a couple of days.  Then we have to get ready for the next one. And that's where we are right now."

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