MEET THE SPARCLONES
With opening night of the High School Football Season soon upon us, I figured I had better address this issue now, especially for our friends in Missouri and Iowa who may not have realized the West Prairie and Bushnell programs have joined forces.
And in so doing, have produced a hybrid mascot that is going to take more than little getting used to before it doesn't automatically jar the ear.
So in the interest of education and understanding...Ladies and Gentlemen....BWP head Coach Roy Gully the Third answering the time honored question:
What the heck is a Sparclone?
Roy Gully III: "We mixed the traditional Spartan of Bushnell Prairie City with the Cyclone of West Prairie and so Sparclone is a Spartan in a Cyclone and so we definitely have one of the most unique mascots in the state of Illinois."
Meet the Tri-States newest blended Football Family. And make no mistake, the union of Bushnell and West Prairie is marriage of necessity, not convenience.
Roy Gully III: "Bushnell last year played with about 20, 22 kids in most games, maybe even fewer. At the end of last year, we were down to 17 kids so its something that obviously with the two districts merging together, we were hoping to solve the numbers issue. We are right at about 45 or so right, which isn't as high as we would like it, but it is definitely an improvement from the last couple years."
Dustin Logan: "We haven't won a game probably for five years. They haven't won a game for two or three years. It's just a big deal. Not a lot of people think about it from outside the area, but we always think about it every day. We use that for motivation to keeping working hard, keep the intensity up."
Roy Gully III: "It's kind of like the chicken and the egg equation. Have we not had success because we haven't had numbers. Or do we not have numbers because we haven't had success. We are hoping to end all doubt and get off to a quick start and have some success under our belt and build from it in the years to come."
And as good fortune would have it, from a talent standpoint, the two programs have proven an apt fit.
Roy Gully III: "Bushnell last year, I went, unfortunately we had to forfeit a game, and I went and watched Bushnell play North Fulton and I came away very impressed with the speed of their backfield. And then you go and watch West Prairie the last couple of years, and we are returning a couple of very good linemen so the mix of speed and size between the two schools is a perfect fit."
Dustin Logan: "Yeah, We got all the pieces we need. We've got some size. We've got a lot of fast kids. Got a good Quarterback. We've just got to know our assignments. Block people and tackle people and everything should work out."
In similar fashion to Ethan Peterson last season, the Sparclone Program, for all of its combined previous struggles, does boast a legitimate All Area type talent in Lineman Dustin Logan. But his value to the program goes far beyond just blocking and tackling.
Roy Gully III: "Dustin Logan is a coach's dream. This is a kid, one of three kids we've had now for all four years. Dustin came in a Freshman eager to learn. He's built himself up through the programs in terms of learning the system, putting on some weight. He's been our leader. He's the Weight Room Warrior. He's the Rah-Rah guy. He's the getting everything organized guy so you couldn't ask for anything more as a coach."
Dustin Logan: "You know it (the transtion) has been pretty smooth. I played Track with a lot of these guys, good guys. We are all working together well. We all want the same thing, to win, because it's been a while."
Roy Gully III: "We are not the biggest team. We have some speed but I wouldn't even say we are the fastest team. But you get these two and three sport kids we have on this team and we are a very athletic team. It's going to be a point of staying healthy. Getting the system down for the guys who have never been in it before. And hopefully getting a little luck on our side and we will see where we end up when the season is over. "