Whitney Young cancels football season – Consumer News

on Sep27

26 September 2017 | 6:45 pm

Whitney M. Young Magnet High School is canceling the remainder of its varsity season with three games to go because injuries and academic issues left them three people short to fill their 22-member roster. This was after Whitney Young shaved its football teams down to a single varsity team, plucking younger students to fill its league.

“We are going to try to revitalize our program,” said Joyce Kenner, principal of Whitney Young. She said the school will offer tackle football again next year, but they are trying to figure out why it’s not popular anymore. “We have very few people coming to the games,” she said.

The Park District of Highland Park also canceled its tackle football program this fall after just 11 people signed up, compared with 33 last year and 54 in 2015, said Liz Gogola, marketing director for the park district. In the 1980s and 1990s, the park district could easily snag 150 people to play.

It’s not that they’re losing interest in football, however. “Close to 100 kids signed up for flag football this year,” Gogola said. They’re just not interested in the potential concussions, ACL tears and other injuries that can come with playing tackle football, said Leah Cermak, a Glen Ellyn mother of a 9-year-old. She says interest in fall baseball has soared because parents don’t want their children to play tackle.

Separately, Niles North High School suspended its varsity football game today because of a possible hazing incident. “The safety and security of our students is our top priority,” Niles North Principal James Edwards said in a statement. “We have zero tolerance of hazing or even the threat of it.”



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