Mike Woodard is a competitor, even when it comes to sportsmanship. Forsyth Central’s athletic director wants the Bulldogs to excel off the field too.
Forsyth Central received the 2013 Georgia High School Association Cooperative Spirit Sportsmanship Award in Region 7-AAAAA for demonstrating exemplary sportsmanship during the 2012-13 school year.
It’s the fourth time Central has won since the award began in 2006. Central last won the award in 2011 as a member of Region 7-AAAA.
"Anytime you get any region or state recognition it’s a great achievement," Woodard said, "not just for Central but the whole community. This is an accomplishment and complement … for providing not only a good product on the field but making sure when people visit our campus we do the right things and provide an environment for not only our own fans but also opposing teams."
The award is based on a 25-point scoring criteria. A school’s administration, coaches, athletes, cheerleaders and spectators are each rated on a scale from 1-5, with five indicating excellence, on various factors like how readily school administrators volunteer to assist in region activities or whether cheerleaders greet the visiting cheerleaders. Any school that had three or more ejections during the school year is automatically ineligible.
Woodard said he’s tried to incorporate what he’s seen other schools do well at Central. It can be as simple as making parking clear for visiting teams and fans or providing a good hospitality room.
"That’s one of the good traditions that we want to carry on," Woodard said. "That means people think highly of what we do from an athletic standpoint. It’s part of a philosophy that sometimes gets overlooked."