Vidakovich column: The Boys Booster Club
I played golf a few weeks back with my friend Rick Chavez, and as we strolled around the scenic fairways of the Glenwood Golf Club he told me that he and his father, legendary coach Bob Chavez, had gone to Rifle to watch the Demon football team play the rival Bears.
Rick commented on how good it was to see so many GSHS students at the game, just like the old days when we were in high school. It was puzzling to me though when he began to laugh and shake his head for no apparent reason. Then the statement came out of his mouth that had me smiling and giving him an affirming fist shake in agreement.
“The only thing missing in the student section was the Boys’ Booster Club!”
Now, before I explain Rick’s comment, I must give you a disclaimer that I do not agree with, nor do I condone any of the following behavior in our local Glenwood High student section. I am merely recounting a part of distant history that for me and several other former Demons, served as an inspiration and a form of memorable entertainment, especially during Glenwood basketball games in the late 1970’s.
The infamous Boys’ Booster Club (BBC) of Glenwood Springs High School was a rambunctious and rowdy group of roughly 80-100 mostly football players who attended every home basketball game when I was a player for the Demons. They filled up two entire sections of the bleachers in the old gymnasium, now known as the auxiliary gym at GSHS. The club was all dressed alike with red baseball caps with the bold letters “BBC” stenciled on the front. This group that intimidated opponents and served as a home court advantage, much the way it is at Duke’s Cameron Indoor Stadium, were adorned in white t-shirts with “Glenwood Demons” written in red lettering on the front.
The Boys’ Booster Club showed up early and started off the evening by heckling Rams, Bears, Bulldogs, Sailors and any opponent that was up for sacrifice that night during pregame warmups. They didn’t let up until the victory was secure.
The BBC was quick to harass the opposition for not only an air ball, but any type of infraction, careless turnover, or even a hairstyle that was not agreeable to them. They helped the Demon cheerleaders along after a particularly bad call went against the home team with a favorite BBC cheer: “Nuts and bolts, nuts and bolts, we got screwed!” Then there was also the popular “You get a rope, I’ll find a tree, let’s get together and hang the referee!”
I have to admit that even as a player, there were times during a free throw or any break in the action on the court, when I would peek over to see what the BBC was up to. Everyone loved them, even if they did leave many parents and administrators shaking their heads in disbelief.
Then there was the night the Boys Booster Club went a bit too far. Things ended up in a complaint from the principal and parents from Craig (Moffat County) and some local adults that ultimately slowed the steamroller that was the BBC.
During a timeout of a beat down we were putting on the Bulldogs from Craig, members of the BBC threw a rope over one of the large pipes that hung from the ceiling just above the bleachers in the section in which they were sitting. Every member stood, removing their caps, and watched as a stuffed toy bulldog, with a rope around its neck, was slowly hoisted to the rafters. The students erupted in cheers, but our principal at the time, Bob Laffoon, was not so amused. Mr. Laffoon was already in a bad mood, since he had been booed resoundingly by the BBC for removing one of its members from the gym who had been given a technical foul from the stands earlier in the game by a referee.
The next week, after meetings with administrators from both schools and several parents, the BBC was more closely monitored. The same group still came to the games and cheered loudly, but they were forced to follow a much more subdued pattern of support for the Demons. The BBC was warned that no more disrespectful tomfoolery would be in the least bit tolerated.
I attended this year’s homecoming football game the Demons played with GJ Central, doing the story for this newspaper. And yes, just like Rick had told me, the student section was alive and well. They were jumping, dancing, swaying, and cheering “R-o-w-d-i-e, that’s the way we spell rowdy. Let’s get rowdy!”
It was great to see and the home team easily triumphed on a beautiful fall evening.
Watching those excited Demon students, I still couldn’t help but harken back to the old days of the BBC. I guess because it was my time, and most of their antics weren’t such a big deal back then. To this day, I really don’t understand why the stuffed bulldog made such a commotion, but I grew up in a simpler day and age.
Boys’ Booster Club, I salute you. For a short while you had the Demon gym rockin’ and rollin’ and made it “a hornet’s nest,” as Coach Chavez used to say. You helped make opponents shudder at the thought of coming here to play. I won’t ever forget you.
Well done, fellas. Long live the BBC!
Glenwood Springs native Mike Vidakovich is a freelance sports writer, teacher and youth sports coach. His column appears on occasion in the Post Independent and at PostIndependent.com.
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