New Greenwood scoreboard for more than sports

6 December 2018

The new scoreboard at the south end of the Greenwood football stadium will be used for more than game-night information.

Students and local businesses will benefit from the scoreboard, which was purchased at a cost of $85,000 and installed in September. Two large panels reserved for potential advertisers are at each side of a video screen capable of showing instant replays, advertisements and student announcements.

The scoreboard is a continuation of the school’s effort to update the athletic facilities.

“As time went on we were able to utilize money academically and athletically,” said Kent DeKoninck, superintendent of Greenwood schools. “Our Greenwood community wants functional (facilities), and we try to be very careful. We want to be good about our taxpayer dollars.”

In January 2017, the school opened a 30,000-square-foot fieldhouse at a price of $4.9 million. It features three basketball courts and a two-lane running surface. Activities from physical education classes to sports practices to color guard routines take place every school day inside the fieldhouse.

Other recent improvements for the high school’s athletic teams include better drainage in the outfield of the Woodmen baseball field and cement sidewalks leading to the baseball and softball facilities. The tennis courts were resurfaced during the summer.

These and other improvements — including installation of the new scoreboard — became possible after bids for other work came in below the estimates.

A $43 million bond also covered construction of the new middle school and its eight-lane running track and improvements to the high school gymnasium.

“On top of that we’ve had a whole other wave of things we’ve been able to do. We were fortunate to hit the right time for bidding,” Greenwood athletic director Rob Irwin said.

Cost of the new scoreboard will be offset by advertisers, which in time will produce revenue for the school. All video will be done by the school’s new broadcasting class. This includes which videos and graphics are displayed and when.

The previous stadium scoreboard installed in 2009 was used mostly for football and included no video screen or space for advertisers. The new scoreboard is 24 feet tall and 24 feet wide. Each of the four advertising spaces is 4 feet by 4 feet at a cost of approximately $1,000 per year.

“We have unbelievable community support,” assistant superintendent Todd Pritchett said. “The day that (scoreboard) started going up, Rob’s (Irwin) phone started lighting up with people wanting to advertise. We have that support from the band program to the athletic programs to academic programs.”

Pritchett said a new scoreboard was something the school district had been considering. Though not a priority compared to some of Greenwood’s larger and more-expensive projects, it’s the type of scoreboard commonly seen at football stadiums in the Mid-State Conference.

By comparison, Center Grove, a school with more than twice the high school enrollment and a member of the Metropolitan Interscholastic Conference, installed a new video scoreboard this past summer at a cost of $357,000. The Center Grove scoreboard is 17-foot tall and 30-foot wide.

Greenwood High School introduced a radio and TV class this school year. Brad Clark, who teaches the class of 15 students, said students will be using the scoreboard to broadcast messages and show video clips.

“It was a class created for the kids who wanted to do sports broadcasting,” Clark said. “The new scoreboard is something we started to utilize toward the end of the (football) season to use the video aspect of the board.

“For me, this is one of the reasons to be a teacher. To see the kids be passionate about something.”

During the winter sports season, students from Clark’s class are videoing and providing play-by-play for approximately two-thirds the girls and boys home basketball games for the Woodmen Broadcasting Network.

They plan to cover two dual home wrestling matches and perhaps some swim meets, also. In the spring they’ll cover baseball, softball and maybe some track and field. The scoreboard is just another way of promoting students and their achievements.

“With the video part, that’s where our class is going to come into play,” Irwin said. “They’re going to be able to showcase what they’ve done in their class. They’ll be adding the graphics and the things that come up.

“They can run athletes of the week, a team of the week and run that before football games. Hopefully we’re able to get all of that up there.”