COLUMBUS — The Ohio High School Football Coaches Association (OHSFCA) and several other coaches’ associations have joined forces to show their combined disappointment in the Big Ten Conference’s recent decision to play conference games on Friday nights beginning in 2017.
“We would like to express our disappointment with the Big Ten Conference’s decision to play football games on Friday nights,” said Matt Dennison, president of the Ohio High School Football Coaches Association and head coach at New Philadelphia High School. “Our association is vehemently opposed to this action as it infringes on a great American tradition of high school football, is not in the best interest of student athletes, cripples the small budgets of high school athletic departments, disrupts the relationships between high school coaches and Big Ten coaches, and hinders the recruiting process.
“It is a complete financial decision that was made to create revenue for the Big Ten. The Big Ten’s quest for money is greater than the great game of football. We would hope that they would reconsider this decision and that Ohio State would follow the lead of Michigan and Penn State in not participating in this endeavor.”
The OHSFCA has joined with high school football coaches’ associations in Michigan, Minnesota. Illinois, Indiana, Iowa and Wisconsin in opposing the decision.
The Big Ten Conference announced last week it would play six conference games on Friday nights beginning in 2017. Michigan and Penn State have alerted the conference that they will not participate in Friday night games.
In Ohio, 716 high school teams with a combined 43,000 players participate in high school football each year.