Three teams from the same conference in Ohio are playing for state titles this weekend. No other conference in the football crazy state of Ohio has ever done that before, according to the Dayton Daily News, and this is the Midwest Athletic Conference's THIRD STRAIGHT year doing so.
The Dayton Daily News sat down with the three state title contending head coaches; Tim Goodwin from Marion Local HS (OH), Chip Otten from Coldwater HS (OH), and Geron Stokes from Minster HS (OH), to talk about the keys to the league's success over the last few years, and they highlighted some interesting aspects of each of their respective community's.
For one, Marion Local, Coldwater, and Minster all do not field a boy's soccer team, which would undoubtedly steal at least a key contributor or two from their roster. Second, there are virtually no transfers in any of the programs. It's extremely rare in each district to see a kid transfer to another district. Lastly, and perhaps most interestingly, there is a serious lack of youth football leagues in the area therefore a lot of kids don't start playing football until they're in middle school.
A lot of coaches invest a ton of time and effort into their youth programs as a feeder program for the upper levels, but at those three schools, those youth programs don't exist, and the teams have never been better, in part because of that absence.
Coldwater head coach Chip Otten, Minster head coach Geron Stokes, and Marion Local head coach Tim Goodwin offered the following explanations for why they feel that has been an advantage for them as they've built each of their programs.
Stokes, Otten, and Goodwin are all great examples of it's not what your program has, or does not have, it's your outlook that matters.
Head over to the full piece to see what the coaches think about not fielding a boy's soccer program, why transfers are so rare, and what makes their small town community teams so special.