There's quite a bit of sports history in this county. I've never been a stellar history student, but even I will hit the books for a quick sports history recap.
Just last month, Evans Middle School celebrated its old football field with a parade, pep rally and a win over Greenbrier Middle. The field is 47 years old. You'd think the grass would begin turning gray now. It's not turning gray, but it is turning in to a shopping center. I'm glad we gave it a proper goodbye.
Another Columbia County fixture, football coach and athletic director Mickey Derrick, is stepping down after 30 years of coaching. Although he's not old enough for the "historical status" yet, a statue of him in a Michael Jordan slam-dunk pose outside the Brierpatch isn't a bad idea.
In addition, Greenbrier is celebrating its 10th anniversary and 10 years of Wolfpack sports dominance. The softball, cross country, volleyball, boys soccer, track and tennis teams have all made the playoffs at least five times in 10 years.
Lakeside is making history of its own this spring with the first high school lacrosse team in Columbia County.
Then there's Harlem, whose marching band is celebrating 50 years of rocking the stadium on Friday nights. It worked this year. Among the public schools, the Bulldogs finished the football season with the best record in the county.
There is one other nugget of Columbia County history that deserves attention.
This school year marks the 50th anniversary of the Evans "Knights" mascot.
In a 1955 vote, the student body overwhelmingly chose "The Black Knights" as the school's mascot, and the name has stuck since.
Generally speaking, a mascot needs to be a tough and intimidating but politically correct representation of your sports team. This means that the Redneck Bunnies would be a terrible choice.
Overall, Columbia County has a pretty good selection of mascots.
At Lakeside, a panther is appropriate. It's a strong, impressive predator with quick reflexes. Lakeside fans use these same reflexes and skills to avoid the mile-long traffic jams in the parking lot after football games.
Harlem took a popular choice by going with the Bulldogs. It has teeth, claws and muscles, and Harlem fans can be University of Georgia fans with little change. Someone was using his head on this one.
Greenbrier's mascot is a little different. The "Wolfpack" is the only mascot name in the county that doesn't end in an "s."
Keep in mind, it's not just one wolf. It's a wolf pack. The school could go along with the NFL team that shares their colors and logo and call themselves the Wolfpackers.
An Evans Knight is a chivalrous, awe-inspiring warrior from the past. Years ago, the Knight left his pillars and arch at what's now Evans Middle School. Hopefully, the school will see fit to ensure those historical fixtures are given a proper place to call home.
Then there are the private schools. The Augusta Christian Lions and the Augusta Prep Cavaliers have been around for a while. At Augusta Christian's homecoming two weeks ago, they had an actual lion in a cage. As far as I know, no actual cavaliers are caged up at Augusta Prep, but they could house an entire zoo with the huge buildings under construction on campus.
So there's a recap of the area mascots with complete, and unsolicited, mascot commentary. Hopefully, I haven't offended anyone too much. If I did offend, hopefully I got everyone equally.
I should wrap up by saying I'm a Cleveland Browns fan.
Don't ask. I have no idea.
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