WOODSTOCK – Just a few weeks before the high school football regular season starts, Central’s schedule is up in the air.
On Tuesday, Park View High School in Sterling announced it was canceling its football season due to lack of players on the team. Central Athletic Director Justin Broughman said he found out about the situation on Tuesday afternoon.
“I got a call from (Park View’s athletic director) and he mentioned they didn’t have enough players to support a team,” Broughman said on Wednesday afternoon. “So we went into a mad scramble and we’re still not entirely sure what we’re going to do about it.”
Broughman said he hopes to know more within the next few days. To make matters worse, Manassas Park High School announced Tuesday that they might also have to cancel their season. The school was supposed to make a decision on Wednesday, and Broughman said as of late Wednesday afternoon he had not heard anything from Manassas Park.
Central was scheduled to play Park View on the road on Sept. 14. Central is scheduled to host Manassas Park on Sept. 7. Central has an open date on Sept. 21, which gives them another option to schedule a game. If Manassas Park decides to cancel its season it would have an effect on other local schools as well. Skyline is scheduled to host Manassas Park on Oct. 12, while Warren County is slated to host the Cougars on Oct. 19.
Broughman said that Central has a couple schools that they were looking at to fill the schedule, but nothing had been decided yet.
Central football coach Mike Yew said that it was disappointing that Park View couldn’t field a team. He said the timing of it makes it even harder to find a new opponent.
“It’s very frustrating,” Yew said. “I can’t help but think you have to have some inkling that this might be coming. I’m not blaming anybody or throwing anybody under the bus, but if we know this a month ago and we start getting some things in line then maybe other schools can move dates around to make things work for everybody. So from that regard, it’s very frustrating. But for those kids (at Park View) that want to play, I feel sorry for them. It’s unfortunate they don’t get to play the greatest sport on this earth.”
Throughout the area, most of the football teams are seeing more players come out for football this year. However, Yew said he’s talked to some coaches and players south of the area who have said their numbers are down.
Yew said he’s not sure why numbers would be down for football. He said it could have something to do with kids playing more video games or maybe because of parents and players worried about concussions and safety in the sport.
“Every time you turn on ESPN you hear a new issue with concussions,” Yew said. “It’s unfortunate because I think equipment’s gotten better. I think kids are far more taken care of than they’ve ever been. I think the emphasis and the stress on hitting and using proper technique is better on our part than it ever was. But at the same time, I understand the parents and they don’t want to take a chance and it is what it is.”