‘Opp’ortunity knocks

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Opp’s Booster Club will be working to fill stands at Friday’s playoff game

Opp’s Booster Club will be working to fill stands at Friday’s playoff game

One of the key’s to winning Opp’s Friday night playoff game is support in the stands.

Considering it’s going to be a four-hour ride, the Opp Booster Club knew it had to act fast to make sure the stands were filled with black and gold when the Bobcats take the field in the first round of the Class 3A state playoffs against the Fayette County Tigers.

To do that, the club secured a 54-passenger charter bus, booster Brett Ballard.

“And that filled up in four hours,” Ballard said. “We have a waiting list for seats, but we’re encouraging everyone who wants to follow behind us. We’ll have a caravan.”

Ballard said the group, which will depart at noon, will stop at 4 p.m. for an early supper in Birmingham. The club has chartered five buses for the trip – four for student athletes and the band, and one for fans.

At first, Ballard said the group was unsure if they would be able to pull off the trip.

“Opp has always traveled well,” Ballard said. “And it doesn’t matter where the play is. Last week, it was regional volleyball in Montgomery, and this past weekend, it was a cheer competition at the Peanut Festival. When you look at our section on our side, it’s black and gold everywhere.”

And Ballard is encouraging all fans to travel to Fayette County, which is about 45 miles north of Tuscaloosa.

“I do the play-by-play in the pressbox,” he said. “So, I’m looking across the field at the Opp side. When you go to an Alabama game, you see everyone in crimson and white. It’s like that for Opp, except we’re in black and gold.

“We don’t have terrible towels or jugs, but we do know how to show our school pride,” he said.

Ballard said the trip is one the club has wanted to organize for years.

“People said they always wanted to do this, but we never got the opportunity,” he said. “In fact, we weren’t sure we could pull it off this year. When we made the decision to do it at booster meeting, then we couldn’t find buses. And I mean none for the team, none for the band.

“Thankfully, one day last week, we got the call that some teams that had played Friday were put out of the playoffs and we started getting calls saying buses were available.

“So needless to say, we’re tickled to death we got this together,” he said.

Opp will kickoff Friday at 7 p.m.