Eric Marks, a sophomore starter for the Adams High Patriots, must accept math tutoring to keep playing as the team heads for the second round of the playoffs. Counselors choose Karelys Lopez, girlfriend of his rival Dave Pitts. When Eric finds that Dave has hit Karelys, Eric tries to convince her to leave him.
Eric’s sister Belle, a track star, opts to take human growth hormone. The Patriots play crosstown rivals Northside; though they win in a squeaker, Dave fights and is lost to the team for the final game. Center Clyde Williams, who has been taking steroids, must do without them and is not one hundred percent. Eric realizes that, despite his youth, he must step up and take a leadership role.
During the state championship game, Adams battles Winchester and wins the state championship. Though Eric does not win Karelys, he feels pride in what he and his team have achieved.