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Baldwin High School Women’s Flag Football Team Wins Atlanta Falcons Grant for $5,000

Baldwin High School Women’s Flag Football has picked up a $5,000 Atlanta Falcons grant as well as Nike credit of $3,000 for new uniforms. This is a major score for flag football coach, Tara Burney, who also serves as principal to the nearby Midway Hills Primary school. “Many of our high school students in Baldwin County not only go to school, but they also work as well,” Burney said, “so this funding is going to remove a barrier for those who would like to play flag football.”

She first learned of the grant from BHS Athletic Director Dexter Ricks Sr, and was required to research and prepare a budget based on the team’s prior year which, for BHS flag football, was their inaugural year. “Then, based on last year’s season, I needed to assess what safety equipment we needed. I tallied all that up and sent it to the Atlanta Falcons and was awarded.”

The BHS Flag Football team plans to use the funding for improved safety equipment. Burney is looking into smaller helmets, which are allowed by the Georgia High School Association, as well as knee pads and elbow pads. “It’s a really physical sport,” Burney said, “if I had my way, the girls would actually have equipment just like the boys have.”

Burney said that while interest was pretty good for the team in its debut year, it has exploded this year. The season is scheduled to begin in October, with tryouts held on August 24th with over 60 players showing prior interest, from eighth all the way to twelfth grade. “I’m excited about the level of interest,” Burney said, “and to have about five returning players who are ready to get on the field.”

This year, the flag football team will play in a new region against teams in nearby Bibb and Houston County, which Burney says is great because they no longer have to travel all the way to Atlanta to play. “Flag football has been a big deal in the Atlanta area for a long time,” she said, “but it’s actually spreading to Middle Georgia now and South Georgia soon. We’re just coming into flag football but the schools in Atlanta have had their teams established for about three to five years now.”

This meant that the women’s flag football team was up against established veterans of the game last year, but this year Burney says that with renewed vigor, spirit, and the Atlanta Falcons Grant, “we’re coming for you this year!”

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