Lycoming College, a D-III school located in the small city of Williamsport, Pennsylvania, has a rich football tradition, and is looking to add to that with the addition of a new turf field this season. The College has undertaken the huge fundraising task and has seen some great support in the past few months.
The goal for the project, which began in January, was to raise $1.1 million, with 80% of that total needing to be pledged four months later, in April in order to get the field in place before this season. Many people in the campus community didn't think raising that amount of money in such a short window was possible. Thanks to the competitive nature of the coaching staff, campus community, and surrounding Williamsport community the program has secured $725,000 in pledges as of yesterday and need only $100,000 more to move forward with the project.
Two people in particular have been instrumental in the fundraising efforts. Defensive coordinator Steve Wiser, and former head coach Frank Girardi have been around the program for a very long time and have been vital in the ability to raise funds. Wiser has been a member of the Lycoming program as both a player and a coach for 42 years, and Girardi served as the head coach from 1972 to 2007, so the two of them know most everyone in town, and each also has an undying loyalty to the program. Combine that with the fact that Wiser has been described by many as a fierce competitor, and you get a few guys that are tough to say "No" to.
The staff is confident that they will be able to come up with the remaining funds by the end of the month to secure the new turf field this season.
The video below does a great job highlighting the tradition of the program and the passion that the coaches and community have for this project. Turf fields have helped numerous programs take things to the next level, and is a huge recruiting tool, and the people at Lycoming understand that.
We're hoping they reach their goal.