What area high school team will travel more this football season?
Published 11:00 am Wednesday, June 7, 2023
Beulah will be hitting the road this season as its football team will be traveling more than any other school in Chambers County.
For this season, Beulah has five games on the road. Beulah will travel an average of 89 miles per road game, and in total will travel 445 miles this season.
In Chambers County, Chambers Academy wasn’t far behind, traveling 438 miles this season.
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Beulah travels 35 more miles than Springwood and over 100 more miles than Valley, Lafayette, and Lanett. Four out of five of Beulah’s road games are trips of over 90 miles.
Most of Beulah’s travel this season has to do with their geographical location compared to other teams in their region. Three of Beulah’s region games are on the road this season, and all three of these games will require trips of over 90 miles.
“You just gotta play the cards that you’ve been dealt,” Head Coach Matt Johnson said. “You would like to be closer for budgeting reasons.”
Johnson says that Beulah will be taking two buses to most of these games. One of the major concerns for Beulah will be the costs of taking the buses for their road games.
“The biggest deal is money to be honest with you,” Johnson said. “It can be anywhere between $600-$700 per bus per trip. That adds up quite a lot.”
Beulah’s furthest trips will be to Weaver and Walter Wellborn. Johnson says that these trips could end up costing “thousands of dollars” due to bus travel and other expenses.
Luckily for Beulah, Johnson says that he believes that Beulah’s athletes will be mostly unaffected by the excess amount of travel this season.
“They don’t care where we play,” Johnson said. “They don’t mind traveling, they just want to play football. These kids love to play football.”
A negative for Beulah this season will be the distance their fans will have to travel this season to see their team play.
“You’re asking moms and dads who are working hard at their jobs to spend a lot of money for travel,” Johnson said. “I hate it for them, I really do. We generally have really good support and I’m very thankful for that.”
For anyone that has rode on a school bus for a long period of time, you know how stiff a person can get lying in those seats.
For Beulah, Johnson says that the plan is to keep their scheduling consistent with their scheduling for a home game.
“We’re consistent with what we do,” Johnson said. “Nothing can be perfect, but we try to have our time scheduled around what we would do during our home games.”
One of the hardest parts about traveling with a group of high school kids can be keeping them focused on the task at hand.
“The big thing I preach is just focus,” Johnson said. “We’ve got a job to do. With the amount of seniors we have this year, I don’t think it’s going to be a big deal. These guys are locked in and focused. When you got good leadership, you’re probably going to have good focus.”
Different teams have different rules when it comes to traveling on the bus to a road game, but Johnson says there will not be a problem with his players due to the standards that have been set.
“We keep it calm and quiet,” Johnson said. “They know the expectations and the standards. They don’t deviate from that. They generally know our standards and they don’t have a problem with it.”
Another thing that teams have to plan when traveling is how they will be feeding the players. For home games, a local church provides the food for Beulah’s football team.
For road games,Beulah relies on parents, the booster club and donations to feed their football team each week.