Ju­nior Bru­ins Youth Foot­ball Cancels Sea­son

Riverbank News - - SPORTS - BY RIC McGINNIS

The smoke has cleared, the dust has set­tled, and it has been de­cided. There will be no Ju­nior Bru­ins Youth Foot­ball in River­bank this year.

The main cause, ac­cord­ing to team board pres­i­dent Casey Blevins, there were not enough play­ers signed up ahead of the sched­uled be­gin­ning of prac­tice a few weeks ago. Sign-ups had been held on an al­most weekly ba­sis through­out the sum­mer.

Typ­i­cally, the young­sters be­gin work­outs a few weeks be­fore high school play­ers, pri­mar­ily be­cause their sea­son start weeks be­fore school be­gins, and their sched­ule is usu­ally over well ahead of the end of the high school sea­son.

The or­ga­ni­za­tion’s board of di­rec­tors voted to can­cel the cur­rent sea­son, and in­stead con­cen­trate on gath­er­ing spon­sor­ships from com­mu­nity busi­nesses and or­ga­ni­za­tions.

They hope to raise about $8,000 to be able to pro­vide schol­ar­ships for play­ers next year. Blevins said the board was guess­ing the cost of play­ing on the teams, on top of the costs to a fam­ily to travel to the away games, was hin­der­ing par­tic­i­pa­tion.

The lo­cal youth foot­ball or­ga­ni­za­tion re-named it­self a cou­ple of years ago, hop­ing to align with the River­bank High Bru­ins foot­ball pro­gram. At times, they have shared coach­ing ef­forts.

Im­me­di­ately be­fore that, in 2014 and 2015, the teams were called the River­bank Raiders. Prior to that, Blevins said, they were called the Red­skins, and started out joined with a team in Oak­dale.

“Hope­fully, we’ll be back next June,” Blevins said.

NEWS FILE PHOTO

River­bank Jr. Bru­ins fielded a “Starts” team, the youngest of the youth foot­ball teams last year. Un­for­tu­nately, not enough play­ers signed up for any of the teams this year, so the Fall 2018 sched­ule has been can­celed.

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