Some Iowa high school football coaches are worried a move by the sport known in Europe as football could hurt their numbers. The Iowa High School Athletic Association has asked for a vote of soccer coaches on moving that sport from the spring to the fall. Iowa Football Coaches Association president Dave Arns says that’s a concern. Arns says they’re trying to keep their numbers up as football is a sport that needs numbers due to the injuries. He says the numbers in football would decrease with soccer being played in the fall.Arns, the head football coach at Waverly-Shellrock, says moving soccer to the fall also creates concerns about facilities, as he says there’s a limited amount of green space available at most schools.He says the number of athletes participating in high school football in Iowa has held steady — thanks in part to the introduction of the eight-man game for smaller schools. In 1997 there were 356 schools with football and that jumped to 382 in 2000 — with about 30 eight-man teams.Arns says football is a key revenue generator for most schools as there’s good fan turnout and concession sales at the games.He says soccer doesn’t generate the same revenue, as evidenced by a conversation he had with an athletic director at a smaller school who took in a gate averaging 67-dollars per game and he had to pay the officials 150 dollars. Arns says keeping athletes involved is tougher today because the demands of the sport have increased as athletes now train year-round with camps and weight training. The vote on moving the soccer season will come in September. Proponents of the move say it would create fewer conflicts with activities in the spring, such as graduation. They also say there would likely be better weather in the fall.
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