Here's a question to all of the teams in semi-pro football..... How many teams get involved with their host school's teams/organizations (football, boosters, etc.)? The reason I ask is because we (the Ohio Valley Warriors) have made a serious effort to get involved with our host school and it seems to be paying BIG dividends..... Now, I'm not saying this to brag or to be boastful, but the relationship that we have established and coninue to strengthen seems to be unique. I have been involved with a couple of teams (COL, Ohio Knights) and we were never really able to have that sort of relationship with our host school - and financially, we were always struggling. But in this case (OVW and Bellbrook) - the boosters, the different sports groups, and the administration are FULLY supportive of what we are doing and it seems to be benefiting us in a BIG way. For instance, last night we were invited out to their big rival game vs. Valley View. We had donated some $ to the football program (in addition to the EMT's and the YMCA) at the end of our season, and they wanted to recognize us in front of their biggest crowd of the season to show that we are dedicated to helping out in the community. It was AWESOME, and a number of the guys brought their families out with them to enjoy the game.
Going forward, they have committed to doing everything in their power to help us with attendance and promotion - in return, we have committed to not only putting out a quality, competitive product week after week... But also to doing things the right way and making this much bigger than football!
The East Central Wolverines have been blessed to have a good relationship with the Blackford pee wee league. We have had the city on board with us from the beginning as well. Our players have helped with pee wee tryouts and volunteered to coach pee wee teams. It is a mutual relationship that has benefited both parties. Also the sorority that sells concessions at the games made an extra $600 last year because of our games. I am with you on what you're saying as being involved with whatever organization has your field and being involved with the community can really be a big boost. When you have community leaders calling you and asking you to be involved in things instead of the other way around, it means you've made a difference.
Exactly! Nice! Bigger than football.... Keep up the great work!
I agree with both of you. We the West Central Wildcats have developed an excellent relationship with the heads of the Clay Youth Football League here in Brazil. We have a number of players coaching and helping with teams in the league. We help out at the football camp every year to teach kids the fundamentals of the game. This year my schedule allowed me to attend the camp and help out. The kids had a blast and frankly so did I and the rest my teamates that could be there. The relationship we've developed with the league and the community truly makes it more than just a place to play and practice. It makes it HOME FIELD for our club. You guys are right. It isn't just about football as much as we love the game. It's about making a difference in our communities. For Bill and the Wolverines I would like to add that you guys are great group of MEN and I hope the Wolverines add to their numbers and come back strong next season.
Thanks 58, that means a lot. Cecil brought me into management of the Wolverines early on and one of the things that really got me interested was the code of conduct that we make our players sign. We had both seen many things happen in games we had played in that were bad. I know I had been downright embarassed by the conduct of my own teammates. The atmosphere that Cecil created with the Wolverines is one where we don't tolerate dirty play, fighting, or any other type of misbehavior. We have enforced it too. It's an emotional game and I can say that we struggled with where the line was between misbehavior and being able to defend yourself on the field. But I think it has made our players very aware of their behavior and I'm proud to say that they do play like gentlemen. There is a misconception that we don't care if we get beaten. That's simply not true. We don't do this to lose and this year was particularly frustrating. But we always try to remind our guys that it's supposed to be fun. Win or lose, I have had a blast doing this. I am extra proud of our guys this year for keeping their heads in the face of a lot of adversity. We do have a reputation for playing clean and even if we had gone undefeated, I would have been more proud of that than the wins. That behavior translates directly to a good relationship with our town. If our guys were a bunch of thugs, they wouldn't want anything to do with us.
The Ohio Force are doing a lot to help out the community. At every home game we announce the pee wee league players and this November we were invited to play in a basketball game with the school. We were suppose to pay for the field this year but with the involvement that we had with the little brother program they let us play on the field for free. I think it will help every team to get involved with the host of the field or local school.
Bill, I hear you loud and clear. There is a fine line in this game between defending yourself and being out of control. It is an intense game. That's a big part of the reason we love it so much. You can't sit on the fence in this sport. If my team was a bunch of thugs I wouldn't play. Our coaching staff & veterans have constantly reminded us that we need to play with class, win or lose. And I believe we have done a good job of accomplishing that for the most part. On your season, obviously it was a rough one. But, in semi-pro anything can happen year to year. Hell, we won 1 game last season and had a number of forfiets due to a lack of players. I for one was truly impressed with the fact the Wolverines kept showing up & battling. That shows true heart and class. Forfiets can kill teams and even leagues. No one wants to do it , but sometimes it has to be done. And with the exeption of a couple you guys did a great job avoiding them. Again, hope you get more than enough new recruits and seasoned vets next season and come back strong.And to to all the Wolverines, have a safe off season.