There wasn’t a night last season in which Rocky Mount Prep football coach Don Reams and his players bused back to campus before 11 p.m.
The 2012 season – the school’s first as a competing varsity program – came with the added weight of playing all nine games away from campus.
“They were all late nights,” Reams said of the nearly 700 miles the team logged last fall.
The school has figured out a way to cut down on all those commutes.
Rocky Mount Prep will play its first four home games at the Rocky Mount Sports Complex, joining the Carolina Stallions and N.C. Wesleyan as tennants.
Each of the schools will pay the city $1,700 for each game.
Rocky Mount Prep’s first home game will be on the season’s opening night, Aug. 23, when it plays host to Gaston KIPP Pride.
“It will bring an enthusiasm and a spirit to the game,” Rocky Mount Prep athletics director Warren Davis said. “I know it’s going to be exciting for the students to see the team having home games.”
Davis said the school plans to have presales before their home games, and it will offer bus rides from campus to the games for students.
Reams said having a home field will help the program form an identity, but he was more concerned with the product that will play on the 100-yard field.
“Our first game will be an opportunity to establish school history and set the tone for what’s going to happen,” said Reams, whose team lost to KIPP Pride by 32 points last season. “Hopefully, we have a tougher mindset than we did last year.”
Jessie H. Nunery can be reached at 407-9959 or jhnunery@ rmtelegram.com