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Kingman Academy adds football team

KINGMAN – The Kingman Academy of Learning High School will begin the 2006 school year with a third fall sports team.

The Tigers are adding an 8-man football program in addition to the cross country and girls volleyball teams, with a summer training camp and combine set for June 19-22 at the Centennial Park North Field.

Bill Prichard has been named the Academy’s head coach, with B.J. Suchowierski and Michael Perrine as assistant coaches. It is a first football coaching experience for the three at the high school level.

“The first interest happened about two years ago,” Suchowierski said. “We started playing around with the idea of having a football team and finding the ability to afford the insurance for a football team, and finally this past year they found the ACYFL (Arizona Competitive Youth Football League) and they fit our needs to provide the coverage and the liability shield that enabled us to move forward.”

Prichard said nearly 50 students and their parents attended at least one preliminary meeting before school ended and registered for the four-day camp.

“[Training camp] is an opportunity for us to gauge the potential players, as well as to give someone who has zero experience an idea of what it’s all about and make an informed decision,” he said.

Similar to KAOL’s other sports teams, there will not be a freshmen or junior varsity team. Prichard said he anticipates a 30-man roster after fall tryouts.

“We don’t want to cut anyone, especially if a senior has some experience and it’s their last year and it’s the only chance they’ll have to play, but I think it will be okay,” he said.

Prichard said 8-man football generally follows the same rules as 11-man football, but the game is played at a quicker pace, comparing it to the difference between the Arena Football League’s style of play and the National Football League.

“It will be an 11-man philosophy much like many other 8-man leagues or other kinds of football, and there’s plenty of information out there about 8-man football, so you can get as technical as you want to,” he said.

Although no formal schedule is complete, the Tigers are planning an eight-game schedule, with four home games at a field yet to be announced. Eric Lillis, KAOL’s athletic director, said the school’s Homecoming Week activities will be moved from basketball season to coincide with a home football game. Friday home games are expected to end before the Kingman High School football games kick off.

“Kingman is a football town,” said Suchowierski, a Kingman native. “Another game will be good for the community.”

Many of the same schools KAOL competes against in other sports, such as Telesis and Desert Tech, are participants in the ACYFL.

For more information about training camp, visit the KAOL High campus or www.kingmantigers.com. The camp is for prospective KAOL players only.