Plainview will experience a lot of new tonight when it hits the gridiron to take on Elgin.
During the offseason, a lot of improvements have been made to the home bleachers and other areas. The home stands have been expanded to hold about 2,000 fans, and that's not where the improvements end, according to Plainview coach Chris Berus.
"We have one of the finest press boxes in southern Oklahoma with the new changes," Berus said. "We have needed a bigger press box for a long time, and now we have one that is 84 feet across. We have a large area in the middle for the clock operators, announcers and press people. And at both ends we have plenty of space for both the home and visiting coaches."
The upgrades go even further, from the entire press box being climate-controlled, to built-in Wi-Fi, to a new sound system — right in time for Homecoming tonight.
"Fans and players will now have an enhanced game experience with all these upgrades," Berus said. "In addition, we have a new concession stand area at the east end, and we have additional restroom facilities on that end as well. Everything that was done was to add value to the experience of attending a football game here at Plainview."
Berus credits a forward-thinking administration and a strong community base for helping with these great changes.
"We have a community that takes great pride in what we do here at Plainview," Berus said. "We are very thankful for an administration with a vision to see these dreams come to fruition. And our community has been willing to sacrifice and work hard to see that our facilities are among the best anywhere. These feelings pass over the athletes, and it encourages them to prepare well and play their best to bring pride to their community."
Berus expects the Indians' opener at the refurbished stadium to be a good one with a solid Class 4A Elgin football team coming to call. Plainview, ranked eighth in Class 3A, traveled to Elgin in 2012 and held on for an 18-12 victory over the Owls.
"Elgin has a lot of seniors, and they have a lot of experience along the line, at quarterback, in the backfield and at wide receiver," Berus said. "They give you a lot of looks because they do have so many good people. They will most definitely be a challenge for us since they are so deep."
"These are two solid high school football programs going at it. What more could you ask for an opening game in a newly-revamped facility?"