Butler Area School District Pulls Football Program From WPIAL

School District Superintendent Brian White issued the statement on Friday

Ashley Funyak
January 03, 2020 - 4:23 pm

PITTSBURGH (93.7 The Fan) - A local school district has requested a release for their football program from the Western Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic League (WPIAL).

The Butler High School Football Team hasn't had a winning game in over two years, with their last win in 2017.

Butler Area School District Superintendent Brian J. White has decided to remove the football program from the WPIAL. 

White issued the announcement on Friday on the school district’s website.

“We requested to be released from the WPIAL for football only. That request was denied. Therefore, we have made the decision to go independent,” White wrote.  “This means for the next few years we will be building our own schedule and will not be eligible for the WPIAL and PIAA playoffs in football. We contacted PIAA District 10 and they have agreed to help us schedule games.”

White claimed that the program has been in a “steady decline” for the last two decades, stating that the program has seen 7 coaches over the past 21 years and has an “extremely low” participation rate.

“If just about every other sport in high school has hopes of making the playoffs, why would you want to play football? The answer is that you love the game and we have a few students who do,” White said. 

White said that football head coach Eric Christy will remain in his position, despite two years without a winning game under his leadership.

The school district will also focus more attention on their junior high football program and plans to create a coordinator of coaching position to establish clear communication between the community youth football program and the school's football program.

White also wants to address the culture of high school football in his school district, which he cited as an additional reason to pull from the WPIAL.

“The culture went from expecting to compete in the playoffs to expecting a season with more wins than losses to now a hope of a victory or two in a season,” White said.

White plans to address the culture surrounding their football program by bringing in a motivational speaker to speak with the team throughout the program’s redevelopment.

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