A Thank You to Southmont Football


First I want to thank Codey Emerson for giving me this opportunity to give recognition and appreciation to those who contributed to making the 2023 Southmont Football Team’s Season one that will be remembered for many years to come.  Your coverage of this team was much appreciated.  The last several weeks you were able to get a more in depth look and understanding of who our players and coaches are on the field and off the field.  You were also able to witness first-hand what a group can do to bring a school, community, and county together.

The 2023 Southmont Football Team was such a special group and the support they got was amazing.  I wanted to share my thoughts on this team as a whole; while it is difficult for me to put into words what this group means to me I will do my best.   One thing that I can honestly say though is it is hard for me to not be a little sad inside still right now when I think about this team, their accomplishments, and it being the end for this group.   Like everyone else, I wanted nothing more than to see them play one more time, but sometimes things do not always work out as we had hoped.  I can say that I have never seen a team fight with so much determination through the adversity they encountered throughout the season.  What many may not know is how many of our players played with nagging injuries, missed games with injuries, played ill or missed games with illness and the coaching staff had the tough job of moving players around to different positions to make sure we had the best available unit on the field.  What they did weekly is what really made me believe early on that this year was going to be a special run.  This group seemed to embrace the obstacles that were in front of them and prove that no matter what is thrown at them, they will never let it get them down.  The perseverance shown is what helped them make Southmont history in winning the first ever sectional and regional championships. This team made history and it will not be forgotten. I am proud of our staff and our players in showing such perseverance and determination throughout this historic season.  This team not only wanted to win for themselves, but they wanted to win for every Mountie.

To make such a run deep into the tournament takes a lot of support.  On behalf of the Southmont Athletic Department, I would like to say thank you from the bottom of my heart for making this a special season for everyone.   

This is a list of very special thank you’s from Southmont and myself.  I am sorry if there is anyone that I miss and we had so much support that I am extremely blessed and grateful to have had.

Football Senior Class:  Thank you for your leadership, determination, and buy-in to the football program.  I love your passion for football, your love for Southmont, and your individual personalities.  You have helped this program from top to bottom in more ways than you will ever know with what you have done the last four years on the field and off the field.  I hope you can reflect back and know that you left your mark on Southmont and Southmont Football.  Thank you for helping set the standard. 

Football Underclassman:  Thank you for your hard work, stepping up when asked, being on the scout team, and being asked to play new roles that many thought you would not have to do this year.  Remember what helped get you to this moment and know that it is going to take even more work in the off-season to continue what has been built.

Football Managers:  The daily hard work, the care you gave to the players, the food you gave the players, and support you gave this team was top notch.  The team was fortunate to have four individuals who cared deeply about them.

Coach Hannum:  Thank you for leading this team and program.  Your dedication, passion, and love for our players and program is very much appreciated.  I can go on and on about your love for Southmont.  I hope you can now reflect back and cherish every moment you had with this group.

Coach Dehne, Coach Sparks, Coach Adams, Coach Adams, Coach Allen, and Coach Dooley: Thank you for the time and dedication into the program to develop and prepare our players each week.  Your love for the game, our program, and our school is appreciated.

Film/Stat Crew:  Thank you Coach Todd, Coach Benge, Coach Carrington, and our drone expert Jameson.  The work you guys did with giving the other coaches and players information to help the team was awesome.

Athletic Trainer: Mr. Mark Elizondo with Hendricks Regional Sports Medicine- thank you so much for your support and hard work! You took awesome care of our players and we are so happy you are a Mountie!

The families of Coach Hannum, Coach Sparks, Coach Adams, Coach Adams, Coach Allen, Coach Dooley, Coach Todd, Coach Benge, Coach Carrington, and our AT Mark Elizando: Thank you for letting them lead our program, thank you for the hours and hours that they give up from you all to give to our program, and thank you for showing up and supporting this team like they all belong to you as your own family. We know how much you sacrifice for them to keep doing what they love and it is appreciated and does not go unnoticed!

The Football Parents:  Thank you for the support each and every week.  The meals, the snacks, the grilling, the cheering, your support and guidance at home to the players,  and the tailgating all had a part in the fun we experienced this season. Your support for this team was unbelievable.  Your enthusiasm for Southmont football became contagious and spread like a wildfire throughout.  Thank you for loving this team.

Coach Shaw, Coach Calder, and the Cheerleaders:  Thank you for taking the school spirit up a notch and helping our fans with being the loudest in the State during tournament play.

Past Players and Coaches:  Thank you for your continued support and laying the foundation of Southmont Football.  It was incredible seeing many of you at the games and posting your support on social media.   

Southmont Administration:  Thank you Mrs. Hammond, Mr. Jones, Ms. Blaydes, Mrs. Charles, Mrs. Norman, and Ms. Collisi for your help at games, supervising, organizing pep rallies, organizing and handing out championship gear, and supporting our team to the fullest.

Top Line Athletics and 185 Promotions - Thank you for the amazing championship spiritwear! The gear was awesome and the turnaround was unbelievable! We are so lucky to have such amazing vendors to partner with.

Southmont HS and JH Staff:  Thank you for social media posts, participating in dress-up days, attending the games, and leading the way with school spirit.

Southmont School Board:  Thank you for continuing to support the football team and attending their games throughout the whole tournament.  We really appreciated it.

Southmont Students: Thank you for the themes throughout the season and coming out to cheer on your classmates every week. The support makes a difference, so thank you!

Southmont Pep Band:  Thank you for playing and attending the games.  The last several weeks you guys helped create an amazing atmosphere.

Southmont Game Workers:  I cannot mention every single one of you unfortunately, but a very special thanks to our press box crew, our chain crew, security, ambulance service, ticket takers, concession workers, custodial crew, grounds crew, and maintenance crew.  Playing three tournament games is not an easy task and thanks to all of you, we continued to show why we are one of the best host sites in Indiana.

Ladoga, New Market, & Walnut Elementary Schools:  Thank you for the signs, banners, participating in dress-up days, and sending all the wonderful messages on social media.

Southmont Community:  Thank you for getting behind this team and bringing the noise to every pep rally and game.  You helped give us the extra boost of energy with your presence and voice. It is always so exciting to see the sea of red in the stands wherever this team went!

Montgomery County Sheriff Department and Volunteer Fire Departments:  Thank you for escorting the team.  It was much appreciated and it added so much to the excitement.

Southmont Alumni:  We appreciate you for coming to the games and posting your support all over social media platforms.  It was awesome seeing so many Mounties spread the message loud and proud.

Sponsors:  Thank you to ALL the businesses and local individuals that donated towards snacks, drinks, tickets, and charter buses throughout the tournament.  With your generous donations, our team, coaches, and students will have some lasting memories for years to come. We had several reach out after the regional win and ask us what they could to support and that was AMAZING! Thank you for your additional support!

Local Businesses:  Thank you to all the local businesses for the signs, window painting, ads in the paper, and all the good-luck wishes.  The Mounties loved seeing it all.

The Media:  Thanks again Codey, Jared, and the entire broadcasting team for showing up each week to cover this team.  The weekly coverage was greatly appreciated by everyone.

Montgomery County:  Thank you for all the good-luck wishes and coming out to support this team.  It was truly amazing seeing the county come together.

My Family and Friends:  A special thank you to my wife, four children, family, and friends for being all in.  The behind the scenes help was greatly appreciated and support for this team is a memory we will always remember together.

Again, I cannot thank everyone above and anyone that I may have accidentally forgotten enough for making this such a special season.  The love for this school and community is second to none. I have talked to several individuals the last few weeks and they offered their time or money which was awesome and we are forever grateful, but I promise you the one thing that EVERYONE will remember is how you all showed up for this team and this school.  We cannot wait to see the energy continue as we support all our Mountie Athletics in the years to come! I think we all had a ton of fun this football post-season, so let’s run it back again next season and in the meantime see what other Mountie teams we can help move through the State tournaments


-Aaron Charles, Southmont Athletic Director