Osky FB Signs

Oskaloosa football players, from left, Cody Thomas, Adam Rowley, Cody Green, Kalob Gist and Collin Green stand in front of their signs in the yard of Louise Phillips recently. Phillips had the sings made up for four players who live in her neighborhood and another who is close to her family. When the players graduate from high school, they will get to keep the signs.

 Usually when there are signs in one’s yard, they are for political candidates, houses for sale or garage sales.

But not at the residence of Louise Phillips at 1602 S. 6th St.

The 71-year-old Phillips has been a life-long supporter of Oskaloosa athletics and thought it would be a good idea to show that support of the football team.

So she created signs saying “Street patrolled by Indians” and all include the player’s number and last name.

“Four of the boys live in my neighborhood and the odd one is going with my granddaughter and he’s been like a part of the family for quite a while because they’re bowling partners for a long time since they were little kids and he’s been part of the family,” she said. “So I wanted to do something for five darn good kids and I haven’t done anything for any of the football players for a long, long time since 1983 and I decided to put signs out for these kids this year. With only one of them being a senior, I told him when he graduates, he can keep the sign. The others can’t have theirs until they graduate and I’ll keep putting them out next year.”

She usually has them out during the day, weather permitting, but does take them inside at night because she doesn’t want to have someone taking them.

Recently, she had a little get together with those players and their families and had a picture taken of Cody Thomas, Adam Rowley, Cody Green, Kalob Gist and Collin Green standing behind their respective signs.

The last time she did something similar to this was in 1983 when the Indians went to the UNI-Dome, losing to Harlan in the championship game. For Mark Hutcheson, who lived across the street from Phillips and his parents still live there, she rented a sign with the flashing lights on top and placed the sign in her side driveway.

She added that her love for the game began when her brother, Larry Shipman, played football for Oskaloosa. He graduated in 1961 while Phillips graduated four years earlier.

Phillips was quick to respond on who came up with the idea for the signs — it was her idea.

“I said something to my girls that I was thinking this is what I have in mind and see if somebody would make the signs for me,” she said. “They said, “Mom, that’s a good idea. They’re pretty good kids so that sounds like a good idea.”

She said when they came last weekend, they talked football and had punch and cookies.

Phillips said the kids thought it was a “pretty neat” idea and thought the parents were as excited as anybody, thinking somebody would do something for their kids.

“These football boys are about the only boys I’ve got to watch anymore,” she laughed.

She said she may do something on down the road similar to the signs.

“I like all the sports, not just football, connected with the high school,” Phillips said. “I think we oughta support the kids as much as we can. I graduated in ’57 and, which is eons ago, but I don’t think I’ve missed more than 10 Homecoming games since I graduated.”

Chances are she’ll be at this year’s Homecoming game against Fairfield in a couple of weeks.

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