Blue-White game set for Thursday night
By Richard White
The Greenwood Bulldogs will hold their annual spring football game this Thursday night at 7 p.m. at Smith-Robinson Stadium. But this year’s Blue-White contest takes on a special meaning with the notable absence of offensive line coach Brian Sims, who is in critical condition in a Tulsa, Oklahoma hospital.
Sims is suffering from a rare skin condition called Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis and Stevens-Johnson Syndrome which leaves his body ravaged by blisters and burn-like symptoms. He is on a ventilator and feeding tube and is experiencing diminished kidney function requiring dialysis.
Family members are requesting prayer for Coach Sims and friends have launched several different efforts to raise money to assist the family with medical costs and other financial needs.
During the spring game the booster club will be taking donations for the Sims family. There will also be a benefit carwash for the family this coming Sunday at Greenwood Carwash located at 104 West Center Street.
A Go Fund Me account has also been established for Coach Sims along with a charitable account at Farmers Bank for those who wish to donate.
GHS Head Coach Rick Jones and his staff typically try to pit the first team offense against the first team defense several times throughout the spring game, doing the same with the second and third team units as well.
Several baseball players who missed spring practice through last Monday may also be available to compete on a limited basis, including Connor Noland and Peyton Holt, among others. Noland is expected to be the team’s starting quarterback this fall, and Holt is one of the team’s top returning receivers.
The spring schedule has been structured so that spring sports athletes will have at least a few days to practice football after their seasons ended. The Blue-White game will be Greenwood’s seventh spring practice of the 10 allowed by the Arkansas Activities Association.
The Bulldogs will return to the practice field next Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday to complete their spring work. Practice begins at 6 a.m. and concludes around 7:30.
The last day of school is May 25th and the Bulldogs will practice in helmets only the day after Memorial Day before hosting a major team camp on May 31st featuring several of the top football schools across the state including three of last year’s state champions, Fayetteville, Russellville, and Pulaski Academy.
The Bulldogs will travel to Springdale on June 7th for their second team camp, and team members will continue their work in the weight room throughout the month of June until the AAA dead period begins on June 25th. It ends on July 8th and the annual FASDOGS program will run from July 10-27.
Another team camp is slated for Greenwood on July 12th, yet another one at Fort Smith Northside on the 19th, plus a 7-on-7 competition on July 26th at Smith-Robinson Stadium.
The all-sports parents meeting is scheduled for July 25 for all parents of potential GHS athletes, regardless of sport.
Football activities then escalate after the first of August with the annual boot camp, the 56 sprints, the father-son senior float trip, the Mom’s 101 game, media day, and seniors with moms. Fall practice officially begins on August 7th.
The date for the annual Bulldog kick-off is still to be determined. The Bulldogs open their 2017 schedule at home against Fort Smith Northside on Friday, September 1st.