Two Alaska high school football teams 112 miles apart will merge

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Monroe Catholic High School in Fairbanks, Alaska and Tri-Valley High School in Healy, Alaska are coming together in hopes of creating a football program that will survive a low number of players. According to the Fairbanks Daily News Miner the two schools that are 112 miles apart are merging for the 2019 high school football season.

The main reason for the merger is low participation numbers.

The newspaper reports that Monroe Catholic, which plays in Division III, the state’s smallest classification, has had only 14-17 football players over the last two years. Tri-Valley has never played a football game, because it’s been unable to find enough players after receiving a $10,000 grant in 2012 to start a program.

Under the cooperative, players from Tri-Valley will pay a $300 fee to Monroe and drive to Fairbanks a couple of times a week for practice. When the Tri-Valley players aren’t making the trek north to Fairbanks, they’ll be practicing with volunteer coaches in Healy.

The Daily News Miner reports that five prospective players showed-up last week for the first parent meeting on the merger in Healy.

Monroe Catholic will incorporate Tri-Valley’s nickname, the Warriors, and be known as the Warrior Rams.

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About the Author

Jeff Fisher
Jeff is an award-winning journalist and expert in the field of high school sports, underscored with his appearance on CNBC in 2010 to talk about the big business of high school football in America. Jeff turned to his passion for high school football into an entrepreneurial venture called High School Football America, a digital media company focused on producing original high school sports content for radio, television and the internet. Jeff is co-founder and editor-in-chief of High School Football America, which is a media partner with USA TODAY High School Sports.