CHICAGO (CBS) — The undefeated Wolfpack junior football team was given a super-sized sendoff on Friday in Jackson Park, as they boarded buses to head to Florida to compete for a national championship.

Proud parents and community members gathered in Jackson Park to see the team off in style.

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CBS 2’s Meredith Barack reports their trip to the national championship almost didn’t happen, because the team needed $30,000 to cover travel and boarding expenses.

Last week, the team had only raised a few thousand dollars; but their story then got the attention of local businessman Early Walker, and several others.

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They were able to raise more than $60,000 in just three days.

Now they are headed to Florida, where they hope to not only make their dreams come true, but their parents and the entire city of Chicago proud.

“We did a lot to try to make it happen with fundraising, and just with COVID-19, the old school way of getting donations, and some close to traffic, and a lot of people don’t carry cash now. We have money shortages with COVID and everything, so everything’s digital,” said Charles Gray Sr., whose son is the team’s quarterback.

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The Wolfpack is scheduled to play their first game on Monday. We’ll make sure to keep you updated on their progress in the championship.

Meredith Barack