East Dillon locker room. Billy is handing out tickets to the State Championship. Everyone gets two. Billy starts calling the boys up. Staub echoes his calls, and they get sillier and sillier with their pronunciations. When Vince goes up, he tells Billy that he only needs one. Billy doesn't find this odd, but we notice Coach and Jess, standing right there, hear what Vince is saying and register what it means.
Conversation dinner. Tami tells Julie and Matt that they just don't want them to rush into anything. Julie says that they aren't, they aren't getting married right away, and anyway, Tami and Eric were their age when they got married. Coach says that it was a different time, Tami notes that they were a little bit older, Julie nitpicks that they were still in college and Eric notes, in a more aggravated tone: "IT. WAS. A. DIFFERENT. TIME." Coach's hair is like, "You gotta be kidding me with this shit." Matt speaks up, saying that it's just that he loves Julie so much. They're holding hands and caressing one another like they are the only people in the entire world to ever feel love this seriously; i.e., acting like nineteen-year-olds. Eric, still with a pissy tone, asks if Matt just doesn't understand what he's saying. "Marriage requires maturity. Marriage requires two people who, for the rest of their lives, are willing to listen, to really listen to each other. And marriage requires the greatest of all things, which is compromise." The camera has cut away to Tami's face as she listens to Coach's speech and wonders if he gets the terrible irony of his words. Julie says that they are willing to make it work. "Look at you guys. You were married when you were our age. How many different jobs have you had, how many times have you moved, how many difficult things have you gone through? And you guys have made it work." Julie Taylor! She's been watching and listening all this time, even when she's been acting like a total teen goon. Tami's eyes are welling up as she listens to her husband and daughter wax perfection about marriage. Julie: "You guys are my inspiration." Tami hits a wall and gets up, asking to be excused for a minute. After a nice long pause, Eric lays his napkin on the table and follows his wife outside.
He finds her, arms crossed, fighting back tears outside the restaurant. The camera pulls back and we see them embrace, Tami in her shift dress and cowboy boots, and then listen in on their intimate conversation. She tells him, "It's my turn, babe. I have loved you, and you have loved me. And we have compromised. Both of us... For YOUR job. Now it's time to talk about doing that for my job. Because otherwise, what am I gonna tell my daughter?" And, ooof. My guts. This is so, so true. They have got to walk the walk, you know? If they want their daughter(s) to know what is there for them in the world. That there is love and care and tenderness, but that there is also potential and ambition. Tami wipes her tears away, as Coach has just stood there silent while she spoke. Tami is, at this point, speechless. "You just can't..." and then turns to go back inside. Coach stays outside, his face completely inscrutable. His imagination is failing him. And this is a crisis for a man who has always been able to dream his way into relationships and championships. But here, he can't do it. And it is hurting him, and it is hurting Tami.