The 26th Annual Ben Scott Sports Auction will kick off at 5:30 p.m. on Friday at the University of West Georgia Campus Center Ballroom, which will feature a live and silent auction, cash door prizes, heavy hors d’oeuvres, drinks and much more in what proves to be a year-long process of planning and branching out across the country to obtain items for the event.
“Obviously, this was started by Ben Scott and I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention him about the auction that we eventually named after him. He had a great vision and [boys’ basketball] coach [Tim] Criswell has taken that even to a higher level. I think it’s a fun social event for our supporters. I think they have a good time there. You have Trojans of all ages that show up and support us. It’s really a testament to the support this community has for our athletic programs in Carrollton City Schools,” CHS Athletic Director David Brooks said. “It’s a big undertaking. It’s a big event. But it’s a great fund-raiser for us.”
As the largest fund-raiser the athletic program puts on during the year, Brooks said it takes a tremendous amount of work from volunteers and organizers like Criswell to make the event a success. He said the best thing about it is that all the proceeds are equally spread throughout all the athletic programs at Carrollton.
“It’s not just a certain group, a certain level. It’s just your average high school athlete that loves being a part of athletics and is a good contributor. They get the exact same thing as the elite athlete that goes on in college and the professional level, as well,” Brooks said. “Every student-athlete here benefits from it.”
There are a wide range of items to be auctioned off once again this year, which includes athletic memorabilia, music, vacations and more. Criswell said it’s a matter of trying to find a variety of entities for both young and old, men and women.
Some of the athletic items include autographed posters, helmets and jerseys from such greats as Nolan Ryan, Mickey Mantle, Pete Rose, John Wooden and Nick Saban. One of the new additions this year will be an Alabama grab-bag.
“You can put down a certain amount and it won’t go live. It will be kind of on the side. You’ll put down a certain amount of money and you’ll have an opportunity to go into a pot. You’ll get something. It’s just a matter of which of the six items you’ll get,” Criswell said.
There is also a trip to an Atlanta Braves game in New York, as well as an opportunity to bid on attending any sporting event in the United States outside of the four major PGA Golf tournaments and receive two tickets, a two-night stay in a hotel and lower-level seats — for any game, in any city and any sport.
“If you want to go see the Miami Heat play against Boston — or whoever it is you want to see — you can do that. So that’s a really good item. Then we’ve got a trip to Italy, some trips to the beach in the Gulf,” Criswell said.
Another new aspect to this year’s auction offers Carrollton High School alumni and current Trojans the chance to participate in the ‘Trojans Give Back’ initiative.
“It’s an opportunity for them to buy a ticket at a higher price and recognize or honor a Trojan. So we did it for a three-and-a-half-week period and we had 60 participants. They’re going to get a special pin that they’ll be able to wear and then their name and the sport they participated in and the class they graduated from will be hanging in the Hall of Fame Room on a plaque,” noted Kelli Cook, another Carrollton City Schools faculty member that is part of the auction team.
“So we really wanted this year’s theme of the auction to be about our Trojans that always give back year after year and laid the foundation for other Trojans coming to participate and have all the things that we have ... We have a lot of student-athletes who participate in a lot of things outside of athletics and we want to recognize that Friday night, as well.”
And as another year of Trojan Athletics wraps up later this spring, Brooks is looking forward to seeing the community come out once again to offer its support.
“The folks that do the silent auction do an outstanding job. It just goes back to there’s no way we could pull this thing off without numerous volunteers who put in a lot of hours to help pull this off,” Brooks said. “We really appreciate what the volunteers do to help make this event what it is and what it’s become today.”
Tickets for the 26th Annual Ben Scott Sports Auction are still on sale. You can purchase tickets at the high school attendance office or from any Trojan coach. You can also purchase tickets Friday night at the door. Cost is $100 for two people.