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January 16, 2004

Linton, Union, Eastern join football conference

From: Linton Daily Citizen, IN - Jan 16, 2004

By Mark Downey, Sports Editor

When Charlie Karazsia was coaching football at Linton the Miners played in the Tri-County Conference, which includes teams from Greene, Sullivan and Daviess counties.

Karazsia gave up coaching several years ago and now serves as Linton's athletic director. Karazsia has had the idea for a new football conference for several years and it appears his idea will soon come to fruition.

"We've been thinking about this the last couple of years," Karazsia said.

The schools met back in December and again on Wednesday to iron out more details.

The Southwest Seven will include Linton, Union, Eastern, North Daviess, North Central, North Knox and Wood Memorial.

All seven schools belong to conferences which don't play football, including the SWIAC, Tri-River and Blue Chip.

At one time Linton, North Daviess, North Central and North Knox belonged to the Quad Conference, although it was not an officially recognized conference.

North Knox is the only 2A school in the group and four of the teams, (Linton, Eastern, North Daviess and Wood Memorial) all play in Sectional 40. Union and North Central play in Sectional 39.

The Southwest Seven won't name its first champion until the 2005 season when all seven teams can adjust their schedules to play the six other teams, but players will be recognized for all-conference honors in 2004.

"I think it's important that the players are recognized," Karazsia said.

Linton already played everyone in the field with the exception of North Central. The Miners will pick up the Thunderbirds and drop Monrovia.

"We didn't really want to drop Monrovia becase that's been a good game in recent years, but we had to," Karazsia said.

Eastern has to pick up both North Daviess and Wood Memorial and Union must add North Knox.

Eastern athletic director John Mullen noted that the arrangement will be good for the T-Birds because they'll be able to move away from the brutal schedule they played during their first season.

With six conference games each season, teams will only be playing three non-conference games, which should benefit Union since the Bulldogs have experienced problems trying to fill a complete schedule.

Finding games became more difficult for Union when several Illinois teams they have played over the years formed a conference.

The Bulldogs will play Harmony Coimmunity School of Cincinnati for one more year, then add North Knox. Union's three non-conference opponents will be Monrovia, Riverton Parke and Indiana Deaf School.

"I think it's great for the programs," Union athletic director Tom Hiatt said. "It's a good group of schools and it will give the kids recognition."

Copyright 2004. Linton Daily Citizen. All rights reserved.