For Mike Kelly, a high school football coach in Manassas Park, Virginia, early August usually means anticipation and excitement. But last year, he had a problem. Practices at Manassas Park High School were drawing only 15 players – a tiny number for a sport in which rosters often exceed 50 athletes. Concluding that Kelly’s team was too undermanned to compete safely, the school cancelled its varsity football season, instead playing a junior varsity schedule. “Finding out that you are not going to have a program, that has a big impact on not just the kids [on the team], but on the school itself and the community,” said Kelly, who has coached at the the school for four seasons and played football himself at the University of Virginia. “You don’t feel good.” For many decades, high school football has been a feelgood American institution. The sport provides pride and entertainment in small towns and big cities alike, inspires films like Varsity Blues and Friday Night Lights, and produces the next generation of stars in college football and the NFL. Yet as fans prepare to gorge on beer and guacamole while watching the New England Patriots take on the Los Angeles Rams… Read full this story
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As the Super Bowl approaches, is high school football dying a slow death? have 288 words, post on www.theguardian.com at January 30, 2019. This is cached page on Goose Art. If you want remove this page, please contact us.