Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Is Six-Man Football An Option At DHS?

There's quite a discussion taking place on the Dorchester Times' Facebook page.  It centers around a question we posed to our Facebook followers: Should Dorchester High School play 6-man football in 2015 -- after the two-year cooperative agreement with Milford has concluded?

Entering the second school year of Dorchester's football merger with Milford, we see benefits, including better competition and a chance to have a sustainable program in an era in which students are not pushed to participate.  However, there are also clear drawbacks:
  • Decreased participation. Boys who would likely go out for a stand-alone DHS team don't want to ride the bus to a nearby town everyday.
  • Fewer opportunities for Dorchester kids to start/play on merged athletic teams. 
  • Loss of revenue suffered by DPS due to no home games at Nerud Field.
Six-man football may or may not be a feasible option for DHS next season. There are only a handful of Nebraska schools -- 18 to be exact -- that play the six-man game, but the number is definitely growing.  Currently, six-man football isn't even a sanctioned program of the Nebraska School Athletics Association, which may not be a bad thing.

The nearest school to Dorchester participating in the state's Six-Man Football Association is Deshler.  Most of the six-man schools are much further west.  

The most obvious negative to playing six-man football would be the travel time.  (Another drawback is you need to be a mathematician to tally some of the high scoring games.)

However, with an organized effort and some phone calls by eastern Nebraska school administrators and coaches, we are certain that six-man football could return to its glorious past.

As we wrote on our Facebook page, Dorchester's six-man teams of the 1950s were quite successful. The reality is, the size of Nebraska's small schools today resembles 1950 more than they do 1980.  Our urban areas have grown, while rural areas have lost population, especially among farm families. Fewer students are participating in sports, even when class sizes are healthy.  

So tell us: Is it time for DHS to bring back six-man football? Check out the Times' survey in the left column of our webpage (non-mobile version) and vote.


  1. I believe that at one of the public meetings there was a question asked if six man football was an option

    A board member, the athletic director and a know it all community member all said it was not an option.

    Maybe it's better to have a team and travel 4 weeks of the season than the options our kids have now.

  2. You do realize Dorchester would barely even have enough to play 6 man football?

  3. Parents, this message is for you. Tell your kids they must go out for activities, that they can't just be slugs living in your basement once class is over. The real world doesn't work that way, why let kids get the idea it does? They'll be living in your basement when they're 30.

  4. So this article is stating that a 10 minute drive is too long of a drive for kids to ride to practice?? So 20 total minutes out of a students life is too much to ask for? This just sounds like a scapegoat for kids not to play. If it was in their heart to play they would take an extra 20 minutes out of their time.

  5. I don't think that is what the authors were saying at all. But obviously, the kids aren't going out. How many junior high kids are out for football, two??? They are the ones saying they don't want to play for another school.

    1. By the way has anyone asked the kids what they would like to see done? Ask the 5th graders through 8th graders, they are who will be putting or not putting on the uniforms.

  6. Ask the principal for positives and negatives regarding six man as I believe he came from a school where they used to play six man football.

  7. The team is Milford-Dorchester. Not just Milford. It's lack of kids being pushed. There is transportation for the kids to every practice. Also the kids should want to play for the love of the game. I would rather see Dorchester have something rather then having to for-fit games (like the problem we ran in two a couple years ago that is embarrassing for the entire town.

  8. All this fuss about a football team, and not one comment on the article about the art program..

    What a shame, just tells us a little bit about what is messed up in society

    1. ........................................ thats cause football is funner ......................................................... enough said ................................................................

  9. Here is an amazing, earth shattering, jaw dropping, cage rattling, toe curling idea...

    Get a darn 8 man team back.

    Focus on the junior high on down. Set a goal by a date certain. I fear there is no vision or goal setting taking place, just a wait-and-see attitude. You'll get burned by doing that every time.


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