Paean is a noun that means a tribute or thing that expresses enthusiastic praise.
According to Greek mythology, Paean was the physician to the gods. The word later came to refer to hymns that were sung to praise the gods. More recently it is used to refer to any tribute — musical or otherwise.
The article about the football team was really a paean to its head coach. It praised him for his guidance and wisdom in spite of the team’s pathetic four-and-ten record.