You never thought it would happen.
You never thought you would see the day.
You never thought Georgia College would join the ranks of University of Georgia, Florida State, the University of Alabama and The Massachusetts Maritime Academy.
On Sept. 2, 2017, the GC football team will emerge from a tunnel onto the freshly laid sod of Justin Ronald Peacock III Field to cheers and adulation from 7,000 new fans as they begin their first season in program history against the Vikings of Berry College.
GC President Steve Dorman made the surprise historic announcement Thursday in front of the major alumni and Georgia College athletics’ boosters to thunderous applause from all in attendance.
“We’re very excited to make this announcement,” Dorman said. “Quite frankly, It’s been a long time coming.”
This is a major occasion for Georgia College athletics, which has long been devoid of most southern universities biggest commodity – a football team.
Bobcat football will join fellow Georgia Division II programs West Georgia University, Shorter University and perennial powerhouse Valdosta State University in the Gulf South Conference while the rest of the Bobcat programs will continue to compete in the Peach Belt Conference and the Bobcats have tabbed former Georgia State assistant and Fernfield Timberwolves Buddy Framm to take the reigns as the new head coach of Bobcat football.
“It’s a major honor,” said an extremely enthusiastic Framm in a phone interview Thursday night.
“To take this program and compete in the greatest football conference in the world,” Framm said. “To go up against the Les Miles and Nick Saban’s of the world and try and win the SEC in my first year is a big challenge but, I think I’m up for it. I’m proud to be at the college of Georgia. [Chuckles] Go Dawgs!”
“Quite frankly, It’s been a long time coming.”
Dr. Steve Dorman,
To meet Title IX requirements, GC will add two women’s sports. The Bobcat lacrosse and golf teams will begin play in the fall, with info on the new coaches and staff coming soon.
Lacrosse will play at Bobcat field on West Campus while women’s golf will practice and possibly host tournament play at the Milledgeville Country Club.
As for the football team, the brand new, state-of-the-art 7,000 seat Justin Ronald Peacock III Field will be built at Central City Park, commonly known to Georgia College students as “The Pit”.
The basketball courts and baseball field at the park will be deconstructed and the land flattened out to make room for the new home of the Bobcats. Stands will be built in to the banks of the hills of the park and a massive new scoreboard put in place a construction process that will cost the athletic department two million dollars.
The administration of GC expects the two million dollar investment to pay off quickly, but will need to make academic cuts to fund the project, as well as removing student housing.
To make room for the football team, the mass communication department at GC will be dissolved and downsized into a smaller department known as the “bass communication” department. The new bass communication majors will make up the No. 1 ranked GC bass fishing team as Georgia College will look to continue its dominance on the lakes.
The bass communication majors will increase profits at Georgia College as GC chooses to part ways with longtime meal provider Sodexo and will now have the anglers catch the daily meals for students at The Max dining hall.
“No one will miss them anyways,” said senior marketing major Randy Jackson in reference to the former mass communication department.
Parkhurst Hall, a dorm located on central campus and the dorm closest to Peacock Field, will become the new fieldhouse for the football team, leaving 300 freshmen without dorm rooms next semester. The displaced newcomers will be moved to The Village apartments where they will live with 32 people designated to each apartment.
In addition to the loss of mass communication and the tight living conditions at the village, the heavy cost of the football team due to the new stadium, transportation cost, salaries for coaches and other amenities such as the purchase of a new habitat for a live Bobcat mascot named Flannery on front campus – a total the administration referred to as “Much-ish” – the power will be cut from all buildings on campus each day from 1-to-5 p.m.
“We saw how well everyone handled a lack of electricity when that tree fell over by the pit and knocked the power lines down,” Dorman said. “We figured they could handle it for a few hours every day for the next seven years.”
When the exceedingly high amount of people affected by the many budget cuts were gathered and told about the difficulties having a football team would incur, they all nodded in unison and said, “Yeah we’re pretty cool with it. I mean, it’s football. How can you say no to that?”