By John Wilbert/NEMS Daily Journal
With the majority of the interest and personnel in the Union County high school co-op football program coming from the eastern part of the county, says UCSD superintendent Ken Basil, it only makes sense for the East Union Attendance Center to gain control of the three-year-old program.
With Monday’s 3-2 vote by the Union County school board, the county will no longer have a co-op high school football program. The East Union school instead will house the only program in the county school district.
“Even when we first started the program, we – the school board and myself – all thought that the one school the program could eventually go to was East Union,” Basil said Tuesday. “With it having the most interest in football and the most students, East Union was always the No. 1 option.”
With East Union now being in charge of the football program, that should make things easier for head coach Scott Duley, who just finished his second season at the Union County helm.
Duley, 36, a science teacher at East Union, coached 25 players from East Union, three from Myrtle, and one apiece from the Ingomar and West Union schools during the 2011 season. The team practiced and played home games at the New Albany Sportsplex.
“We got to get some quality coaches hired right now,” said the coach, whose program is expected to compete in MHSAA’s Class 2A as an independent in 2012. “Right now, it’s just me out here.”
Open to all
High school students living in Union County but outside the East Union school zone will still get a chance to play football. Even though the address they reside at may normally require them to attend Ingomar or Myrtle or West Union, they can attend the East Union school so that they can play football.
Unless they move inside the East Union school’s jurisdiction, football, nonetheless, will be the only sport those students will be eligible to play at East Union within their first academic year at the school, said both Basil and Duley. After spending a year at East Union, they will then become eligible to play other sports.
A decision to keep the county’s co-op junior high program intact as it is or shift its command to East Union like the varsity’s could be made at the beginning of January, said Basil.