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RHS plans for renovation to capture 100 years of football history

Russellville High School football is preparing to begin its 100th year of excellence on the gridiron, and this step into a new era is not coming without an appreciation of everything the Golden Tigers have accomplished in the past.

To celebrate entering its 100th year of football, the Russellville field house will undergo a renovation to pay tribute to the history of Golden Tiger football.

“The past 100 years can be described the same as the school: a tradition of excellence,” said RHS head football coach John Ritter. “We have a standard of high achievement every year that we are going to meet.”

Creative Graphics out of Birmingham, the same company responsible for the recent renovations in the baseball locker room, will be designing and installing the renovations.

 “We really wanted to do something to the field house to really capture the history, but we didn’t know what exactly we wanted to do,” Ritter said. “After we saw what baseball was able to do, we met with Creative Graphics and came up with a plan.”

Ritter said the majority of renovations will involve paint and graphics.

“It really is the perfect timing in every facet,” Ritter said. “We are coming up on 100 years and what a great way to really showcase our history.”

Ritter said the design will include a wall dedicated to state champions and state runner-ups, as well as an All-State wall.

Another major element will be NFL helmets for each player from RHS who has played in the NFL. The plan is for the helmets to be cut in half and mounted so they give the illusion they are coming out of the wall.

There will also be a wall dedicated to Chucky Mullins, detailing his time at RHS and his history at the University of Mississippi.

To capture the history of the program, Ritter said the renovation would not be complete without a timeline exploring the evolution of Golden Tiger football. This timeline will include photos throughout the years showcasing everything from changes to the helmet to the field.

Ritter posted a message on Facebook encouraging fans to send in pictures throughout the decades of Golden Tiger football, and Ritter said from this he has at least one picture from every decade in RHS football history.

Russellville City Schools Superintendent Heath Grimes said he is proud of Golden Tiger football and the traditions it holds.

“We have so many talented kids here at Russellville, and we are proud of them and all of their accomplishments,” Grimes said.

Ritter said right now the field house is still in the design process, as they try to decide the best way to lay out the graphics, but the hope is to have the renovation completed within the next few months.

Ritter said the football players have an idea what the renovation will include, but he wants as much of the renovation as possible to be a surprise for them.

“At this point, they have been away from here for a while, so they are going to be excited to come back regardless, but I think this will give them something to be even more excited about,” Ritter said. “They don’t know what it is going to look like, and I don’t even know yet what it is going to look like, but I know it is going to be great.”