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Issue Home April 8, 2003 Site Home

Letters to the Editor Policy

More Than 1/2 The Apple

For the past nine years, I have had two sons play football for Susquehanna. Under coach Bagnall and his staff’s reign, we had a positive program for both players and coaches. Unfortunately, Mr. Bagnall retired from football and our junior high coach moved into his position. This was the downfall of our football team. Coach Mulka had some knowledge of the game that he learned from coaching under Bagnall and he had two assistant coaches that could have helped him, but he didn’t let them. The current assistant coaches, that were put in place by the administration need to be replaced. It’s not the numbers of students that is ruining our program, but the quality of our coaching staff. Why didn’t Susquehanna administration advertise these positions and hire quality personnel, not friends of friends.

We need junior high and junior varsity programs for students 7-9, to get and keep their interest in playing varsity football.

I disagree with the co-sponsorship with Blue Ridge, based on the "facts."

We had over 30 students go out for football. Why did we end up with less than 20? Why didn’t players, who practiced all season long against the "starters," get a chance to play in the last quarter of games (when we were out scored by 30 or more points)? How do you keep their interest, when you only use them as tackling dummies at practice? Football, in Susquehanna, is for Susquehanna students, even if some people don’t think they are "good enough" for our team. Players improve by getting playing time. If it takes two or three years to get this program positive again, then so be it.

If we merge with Blue Ridge, we might have a better record for the first season (we won’t jump up a division the first year) but this will be short lived. In the second year of this merger, we will have to combine the number of students from both schools, which will jump us up to the next division. (This means bigger schools.) We will have to continue playing these bigger schools until the end of the contract, even if Blue Ridge pulls out of their contract!

Why do people keep telling the students and parents we won’t be able to field a team? This year’s senior class has about 56 students graduating. The eighth grade class, that will be next year’s ninth grade class has over 100 students. Let’s improve the school’s program and give our students a chance. Let’s start giving them more than half of the apple.


Jack Downton

Board Member

Starrucca, PA

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