O’Neal: ‘It’s a blessing … still have work to do’Published 9:48am Tuesday, October 30, 2012
Reeltown High School will add another legendary name to their stadium this coming Thursday night when they host rival Notasulga and Rebel head coach Jackie O’Neal’s name will be added to the Nix-Webster Stadium title.
“It’s a blessing for me to have the longevity that I’ve had and also have good kids to run the program the right way,” said O’Neal, now in his 25th season at Reeltown.
“Having my name added to the stadium is something that I think I’ll appreciate more later in life because I feel like right now we still have work to do this season on the football field.”
The ceremony, which will be included in Senior Night Thursday in Reeltown and begins at 6:30 p.m., will be one of special meaning for O’Neal, who joins the company of his one time head coach and mentor in Duane Webster.
“I had the chance to play for coach Webster for a season and then he gave me the opportunity to start coaching with him and I’m grateful for that.,” said O’Neal of his former coach.
“I learned a lot of things from coach Webster, but I also was able to do things my way with this program and I’m proud of that also.”
O’Neal has an overall record of 217-95 at the helm of Reeltown since 1988.
With the festivities going on, Thursday night’s game should also be a good one, with Notasulga having won Class 1A Region 4 and coming into the contest with a 7-2 record.
“Coach Lucas has done a good job with his guys once again this year,” said O’Neal of the Notasulga program.
“This game means a lot to the people on the outside of the fence because they have will have bragging rights and most of the people in attendance will know each other as either close friends or family.”
Reeltown in 8-1 and will host a state playoff game next week regardless of the outcome Thursday night.
“We want to maintain consistency and play our best ball in the playoffs,” said O’Neal, whose squads only loss came to Dadeville to start the 2012 season.
Reeltown and Notasulga will kick off at 7 p.m. Thursday night in Reeltown.