$127,600 to start, $52,300 to maintain a Midd-West High School football program

Musselman presents MWSD directors with program estimates

BEAVER SPRINGS — What will it take to get Midd-West High School football players back on the field?

District Superintendent Richard Musselman said about $127,600, which includes a projected offset from program income and booster donations.

Musselman presented the information during a workshop meeting of the Midd-West School District Board of Directors, held Monday evening in Beaver Springs. His presentation came just weeks after the Juniata County School District announced it will end its cooperative football program with Midd-West after the 2017-18 season.

In Juniata County, East Juniata High School boys will join the Juniata High School team, consolidating into one. That leaves Midd-West with limited options — only two nearby school districts could possibly form a new co-op with Midd-West, which has never had its own high school football program. The cut affects about 50 Midd-West athletes.

The district has started discussing its options, one being the creation of an exclusively Midd-West high school football program.

According to his estimates, Musselman said first-year costs to acquire player equipment for 75 students total $53,829.50. This includes helmets, face masks, chin straps, shoulder and knee pads, home and away uniforms, socks, belts and practice apparel.

Program equipment, such as kicking tees, training aids and dummies cost approximately $27,970.

To hold football games at Midd-West, Musselman estimated the cost of event staff, coaches, transportation, trainer and officials to be $53,324.

In all, first-year costs associated with starting the program total $135,123.50, he said.

Subsequent years are less costly. Fewer items need to be purchased; more can be reconditioned and remain in use. Yearly costs are estimated at $73,321, Musselman said, more than $44,000 greater than the district’s current $28,952.47 commitment to its co-op program with East Juniata High School.

Some of that cost is absorbed by revenue from admission and concessions, as well as booster club support, Musselman said. Midd-West nets $21,000 or more through those resources annually.

If Midd-West creates its own football program, Musselman said approximately $52,321 annually would keep it up and running.

The total expenditure for the cooperative East Juniata/Midd-West program has climbed from just over $32,000 in 2013 to nearly $48,000 last fall, according to figures provided by Juniata County School District.

JCSD stated that, over the past two years, Midd-West, which hosts home games for the cooperative, realized $16,380 in gate receipts.

Other variables include practice location. Players currently are able to practice at West Snyder Elementary School in Beaver Springs. Creating a practice field on the Middleburg campus would cut transportation costs significantly, he said.

Money could also be saved by purchasing East Juniata’s football equipment from the Juniata County School District, if the hosting partner allows it when the co-op dissolves later this year.

“You could really cut down that startup cost tremendously,” he said.

If Midd-West moves forward with creating its own team, Musselman said the board has a relatively brief amount of time in which it can make that decision.

By Oct. 1, he said administration must notify the District 4 Committee and PIAA. As soon as possible, the district will petition the Tri-Valley League to include Midd-West in 2018 and 2019 seasons, taking the place of the co-op team, which is already included in the league schedule.

The district’s football program would be required to enter the Pennsylvania Heartland Athletic Conference for the 2020 season, an all-sports conference of which the Snyder County school is a member.

“We do have some time to make some decisions, but we don’t have a whole lot of time,” Musselman told the board.

A breakdown of the proposal is available in PowerPoint format on the district website, www.mwsd.cc. Hover over “school board” in the top navigation menu, then click “discussions.” In the left-hand navigation bar, click “football.”