ECHS featured in magazine

Published 4:00 am Monday, July 25, 2011

The Escambia County Blue Devils will have 200 personalized editions of Friday Night Football that they willl sell in a fundraiser.|Photo by Chandler Myers

The opportunity to sell some magazines has given the Escambia County Blue Devils a chance to grace the cover of the magazine they were selling.

As a part of a promotion, the Blue Devils took part in a sale featuring “Friday Night Football,” a magazine based around high school football.

By selling a specific amount of magazines, the Blue Devils will get personalized magazines focused on their school, Escambia County head football coach Mark Heaton said.

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“Friday Night Football is a magazine that does a breakdown of all the high school football programs in the state of Alabama,” he said. “They do stories on the top rated players in the state and breakdowns with region predictions and anaylsis of every team in the state. The fundraiser we did was we presold a certain amount of magazines and they will ship us an extra 200 magazines that have personalized front and back covers and inside covers as well. It’s customized w ith photos of our team.”

Being featured on the cover of the magazines will be an asset to the Blue Devils in more ways than one.

The chance to get more people interested in ECHS football along with a fundraiser will help the Blue Devils, Heaton said.

“We are just trying to generate excitement about this year’s team,” he said. “We are also trying to raise some funds for the long season ahead. Once we have them in, we will go out and try to sell them to urge people to support us.”

Being featured on the cover of a magazine will be a special bonus for the Blue Devils players.

Working day in and day out to prepare for the season proves they are committed to their team, Heaton said.

“I guarantee that if those kids haven’t bought one then each one of them will,” he said. “It gives those kids some exposure and allows them to be a part of something special. It’s a testament to the accomplishments they have made and shows how hard they work. Just shows what it means for them to be a part of this program.”

This year the Blue Devils are focused on coming together for one common goal.

A new slogan has come to the team with the focus on becoming a family, Heaton said.

“We looked at what we did last year,” he said. “We feel these kids are closer as a whole and as a unit, and when things get tough they lean on each other and help. They constantly encourage one another and there is never any finger pointing going on when mistakes are made. They rally together, and that’s something we have tried instill in them after the loss to Bibb County. We tell our kids that if we can become a closer football team that will help us get past a game like Bibb County and have a chance to win games like Thomasville and Jackson in the regular season. That’s what we are trying to do. We just want to become unselfish people by playing for our team and our family. We preach it and breakdown on famly every day. Become a family. Win a championship”

Money raised from the magazine sale will go towards funding the team and their season.

Expenses associated with th team creep higher and higher, so this money will help relieve that stress, Heaton said.

“Football is an expensive sport and it takes a lot to fund it,” he said. “Our annual budget is probably around $25,000 to $35,000 with what all we have to pay for. Having to pay for officials, pregame meals and other things is expensive for this 4A program. It costs right at $1,000 to outfit a player with all of the equipment. Right now, we are starting fall practice with around 80 kids, so there is always the need for that money. It supports these kids and the things that they are able to do just to make Friday night happen.”