The early story of this football season has been the end of Albion High School athletics and how student-athletes at that school have been welcomed at Marshall High School.
That meant the end of the Albion football program.
A similar story played out nearly 25 years ago as one of the core schools in Battle Creek ended its football program as Springfield High played its final football season in 1988.
Today, we consider Battle Creek to have five city high schools – which is what we base all of our All-City events and Enquirer All-City sports teams on. At one time, not too long ago, that number was six – which included Springfield.
But Springfield High is no longer part of the Cereal City Six.
We have heard a lot about Albion this summer and the issues that school district has been facing.
In May, the Albion Board of Education voted to stop offering grades 9-12 to help cover a $1 million budget deficit — effectively shutting the doors to the high school for the foreseeable future. Since then, the Marshall school district has agreed to accept Albion’s students.
Throughout this school year, the Enquirer will continue a series in which we look at Marshall and Albion and how those two former rivals are learning to play together.
But how long will we still be talking about Albion? After a few years, it will be just Marshall and the students who had ever walked the halls at Albion High School will have moved on. It will soon become more normal for Albion students to expect to go to Marshall as part of their trip through academia and prep sports.
Albion High School sports will become an afterthought.
Like Springfield High School sports.
But that is too bad. Springfield had its own sports identity at one time before students at that school were shipped on to other school districts, such at Battle Creek Central.
Who remembers what it was like to be a Springfield Ram?
That’s what we want to find out.
We are looking for former players and coaches from Springfield – especially from the football program, as we are currently throwing around the pigskin.
Were you apart of those back-to-back undefeated seasons in 1971-72? Or maybe you were part of the three teams on either side of that run that went 40-3 over a five-year period – still one of the more dominant runs by any city school in high school football.
Or, were you part of the final years when Springfield went 1-8 in its last two seasons before ending the football program and eventually the high school?
We want to hear your stories.