It was the kind of cold they could feel in their bones, made worse by 30-mph winds that barreled across the North Dakota plains and whipped between the goal posts.
“At some point, you are going to walk out there, and your body is going to say ‘I’m cold,’” their coach had warned before kickoff. “Your body is going to try to say, ‘I can’t do this right now.’ You ignore that. You ignore that, understood?”
“Yes, sir!” they replied in chorus with their teammates.
But what did four kids from Liberty City know about playing football in freezing temperatures?
When Rodney Jones and Tremain McCreary walked to school on Tuesday morning, the brothers were headed to the same classrooms, to sit next to the same students, in a building with the same façade it had on Monday.
But it was not the same school they had gone to the day before.
“It’s a relief to me to know the school name had changed. I was thinking about it: How do we have a KKK leader’s name for our school?” Jones says.
“Things are changing around this school,” says McCreary.
It is college-application season, which means high-school seniors across the country are scrambling to write personal statements, list all their extracurricular activities and take the SATs.
Sierra DuBose is one of those seniors, enrolled at Miami Edison Senior High, but she is also one of almost 7,000 kids in the Miami-Dade public-school system who are homeless. That's about 2 percent of the student population.
Sierra currently lives in a shelter for women called Lotus House, on the edge of Overtown.
When Allison Rojas looks at a painting by Alice Neel, the high-school junior sees more than a seated woman in a purple sari.
“She uses very bold lines as you can see,” says Rojas. “Very fleshy paintings.”
Rojas has an eye that’s been trained in fine-arts classes at Miami’s Design and Architecture Senior High. DASH is an arts magnet — consistently ranked among the country’s top public schools — and every year, Rojas and her classmates take a field trip with the school to Art Basel, where she gets to see works like Neel’s "Woman."