There is a new trophy case at Bradwell Institute that showcases the 1965 state champion football team and the 1976 state winning baseball team. The efforts to bring the trophy case inside the school hall was spearheaded by former BI athlete and later coach Candler Boyd.
He said the project was a result of a local committee, mostly former players from the state winning teams that worked to get Olvey Field named after the winning coach Hokey Jackson.
Jackson coached the Bradwell football team, then known as the Lions, from 1957 until 1969 going 96-36 overall, and 14-0 in 1965 when they took the state title.
Boyd said after renaming the stadium and getting signs put up, they had funds left over. They donated $1,000 to the University of Georgia Athletic Endowment Fund to honor Jackson with a brick in Foley Field.
Jackson played for UGA from 1946 until 1950.
"We still had a little money left over… I approached Mr. (Principal Scott) Carrier and he was kind enough to agree to build these trophy cases if we took the responsibility of putting the memorabilia in there and doing it up right," Boyd said, adding that he took it upon himself to get the job done.
He said committee members gathered a lot of memorabilia, had some framed and trophies polished and repaired.
The 1965 winning football, signed by Jackson, and his championship ring are in the case, along with an original copy of the Dec. 9, 1965, Liberty County Herald article that reported on the state win. The case also has original copies of the 1965 championship game program, team photos and the plague the team received after being inducted into the Liberty County Athletic Hall of Fame.
The other section of the case showcases the 1976 state champion baseball team. Boyd was the head baseball coach that year.
"These are the only two teams in the history of Bradwell sports that are state winning teams," Boyd said. "Of course we’ve had a lot of individual wins like in track and that sort of thing, but those are the only two sports teams in Bradwell history that have won state championships. I was fortunate enough to be one of the captains of the 1965 football team and the coach of the 1976 baseball team…it was a blessing."
Carrier said he was pleased to help Boyd with the display case.
"We are always looking for ways where we can honor those who have been at Bradwell and have gone through Bradwell years ago," the principal said. "With these two state winning championships teams … to be able to put something up here at the school to remind people that what you do here can have a lasting impact. We want the current student body to know that we look back on past accomplishments and achievements and continue to honor those. Hopefully they will continue to strive and work for excellence.
"Maybe it will inspire and motivate this generation coming through and show them what is possible with a lot of hard work, dedication and good coaching and all," he said.