Friday nights at Franklin High School just got a lot flashier (and, if you’re visiting, a bit more comfortable).
The school has renovated its once-grass field to a new turf overlay for the 2018 season and beyond.
They’ve also put down a new eight-lane track, and have renovated the visitor’s stands at Howard Gamble Stadium.
According to the Williamson County Schools Director of Facilities Kevin Fortney via the Tennessean, the new turf comes with a price tag of $1.7 million. The publication reports the school is now one of four county programs to have a turf field, joining Brentwood High, Nolensville High and Page.
“It’s all thanks to Williamson County schools and the community around,” said Franklin High head football coach Donnie Webb, who got to oversee his new turf field from a distance as his team stood at attention for picture day Wednesday afternoon.
“When you’re a school that’s land-locked, and when you have so many places teams have to play and participate, that’s where it all evolves from,” Webb said.
The Rebels will move from practicing on a 60-yard grass field to their new turf field at Howard Gamble once it’s complete.
Grass football fields can’t get much wear and tear during the season with practices, but turf would be largely unaffected.
“We’ve been practicing on a 60-yard field for years,” Webb said. “Now, we get to practice on a legit-sized field. That’s going to be the best part about [the turf].”
But, of course, no matter the ground beneath the cleat, the Xs and Os still stay the same.
“It’s still football,” Webb said with a laugh. “Some people like it; some people don’t [like] playing on different stuff. But, no, we’re excited. It’s something new. Anytime something’s new, it’s exciting to the kids.”
The Rebels will get good use of their new turf field and stands when they open their home slate against rival Ravenwood on Friday, Aug. 31.
A video shot of the new turf field at Franklin High School. pic.twitter.com/WvriagILXG
— WillCo Football (@WillCoFootball) August 1, 2018