Team taking donations for ‘Champ’ rings

Steve Rogers
Staff Writer

Looking for a last-minute gift idea or need a tax deduction before the end of the year?

Then the West Point High football team may be your answer.

Donations to the team through the West Point school district are tax deductible and at this time of year, coach Chris Chambless and his staff have plenty of uses for donations, especially coming off the team’s third straight Class 5A state championship.

Chambless is working with a designer on the look of the team’s state championship rings, which will be different from last year’s and the year before.

“We try to make each one of them special and unique,” Chambless said. “We hope to have the design finished early in January.”

With team members and coaches, more than 100 rings will be handed out at a ceremony sometime in March.

The rings aren’t the only cost for which the program must raise money.

Equipment wears out, players grow, seniors graduate and new players come in. That means shoulder pads, helmets and related equipment must be replaced.

Those items and more are critical with the emphasis on safety.

Helmets cost $350, shoulder pads can cost $225 to $250, the coach said.

“At this time of year, we spend a lot of time going through those things and trying to get ready for the spring and then start thinking about the fall. We need all the money we can get. People don’t think about it, but athletics gets expensive and it’s not just football,” said Chambless, who also is the school’s athletic director.

Anyone wishing to make a donation to the program can mail or drop a check off at the West Point Consolidated School District office on South Commerce Street. Put a notation on the check for “West Point High ring fund” or “West Point football.” If made before Dec. 31, the contribution is tax deductible this year.