Sidney High head football coach Adam Doenges has devised a unique way to usher in the high school football season this year.
The first official day of practice for the 2015 season comes up on Saturday (Aug. 1), and to celebrate, Doenges will get things going on Friday night.
Sidney will host its first-ever Alumni Football Game on Friday from 8-to-10 p.m. under the lights and on the turf at Sidney Memorial Stadium.
Doenges said earlier this week that he was hoping for about 20 former players, but the response has resulted in him predicting 35 to 40 former Yellow Jackets will take part.
“They will compete against the current Sidney team in a 7-on-7, two-hand touch passing scrimmage,” Doenges said. “In addition, there will be linemen challenge activities such as tug-o-war and tire flips.
It’s all for charity, Doenges said. There will be a $2 admission charged, and all proceeds will go directly to the Shelby County Relay for Life.
“We charged the players $20, and they get a T-shirt,” he added. “We’re already up to $300, and hope to donate in the $500 to $600 range.”
Fans in attendance can then hang around another hour and watch this year’s Sidney team take the field for “Midnight Madness” and its first official practice, which will go from 11 p.m. to 1 a.m., thus making Sidney the first team in the state to officially start their season, Doenges said.
The Yellow Jackets will have their first preseason scrimmage on Aug. 15 when they travel to Tecumseh. It’s a four-team scrimmage, with the other two teams being Glen Este (pronounced “es-tee”) out of Cincinnati and perrennial powerhouse Clinton-Massie. Massie won the Division IV state championship in 2012 and 2013.
Old SHS gear
headed to Serbia
Doenges said that because of upgrades to the equipment the past few seasons, Sidney High had a lot of old equipment taking up space.
But instead of just throwing it out, Doenges said the school has been looking to donate it. And that opportunity recently presented itself.
Sidney is one of six schools in Ohio to donate equipment to Texas-based Global Football, which along with Ohio Northern University, joined forces with the Air National Guard, U.S. Embassy in Belgrade, and the Serbian Ministry of Youth and Sport to create a partnership to assist the growth of American football in Serbia.
Along with Sidney and Ohio Northern, other schools in Ohio to donate include Columbus Bexley, Columbus Olentangy, Akton St. Vincent-St. Mary and Cleveland Villa Angela-St. Jossph.
Sidney donated 24 helmets, 44 sets of shoulder pads, 90 pairs of thigh pads, 20 pairs of knee pads, 30 jaw pads, 16 neck rolls, three footballs, one blocking shield and one clipboard.
The writer is the sports editor of the Sidney Daily News. He can be reached at 937-538-4818.