Thanks for the history of small school Texas football. Having grown up in a large town with two 5A schools. I was unaware of the origins of 6man in Texas. Never know w played both 8 and 6 at one time.In 1969, there were about 55 or do 6 man schools and 32 or so 8 man schools. In the 1960's a lot of 6 man schools had closed or dropprd football with a few moving to 11 man, mostly in South and east Texas. There was a steady stream of 8 man schools moving to 11 man, like Jayton and Forsan, with most of the 8 man schools north of the metromess planning on moving to 11 man. A few old 11 man schools like Estelline, Follett, and Lakeview went to 8 man. The 6 and 8 man coaches association voted to see who would survive and naturally the 6 man schools outvoted the 8 man ones, so the UIL decided to drop 8 man after the 1975 season. I think this was after the UIL let Class B (6, 8, and 11 man) play a state championship.
By 1975 there were only 28 8 man schools left.
Several of the 8 man schools went 11 man for at least 4 years - Goree, Garden City, Sterling City, Borden County, Dawson, Follett, Woodson, Leakey, Nueces Canyon, Medina, Harper, Center Point, Gunter, Cumby, Blue ridge, and Tom Bean. The rest went 6 man.
I do not see the D1 6 man schools voluntarily going 8 man.
And that was when there were well over 100 class B 11 man schools with enrollments over 100. When Garden City went 11 man in 1976, they rarely traveled more than 90 miles for a regular season game. Back when we played 8 man the average travel distance was well over 100 miles. The district we were in in 1973 consisted of: Garden City, Sterling City, Borden County, Klondike, Loop, Dawson, Wellman, Smyer, Cotton Center, Three Way, and Whitharral. There were some dang long bus rides to games. The other West Texas district was just as bad: Goree, Patton Springs, Follett, Estelline, Guthrie, and Miami. Guthrie did not even play in 1973 due to a lack of players. The other districts were : Harrold, Westminster, Gunter, Bryson, Northside, Cumby, and Woodson then the final one was :La Pryor, Leakey, Nueces Canyon, Knippa, Center Point, and Harper.another reason 8man went the way of the dinosaurs in Texas had to do with how spread out the districts had become in both 6man and 8man, if it came back that would be a problem again...it isnt coming back... at best 20-25 schools would want that and a good number of those would be 11man schools some of which should be playing 6man but refuse to
7A will be voted in very soon from what I’m hearing.I think what would have to happen, is we would have to adjust the cutoff and the only time to do it would be when 7A is voted in. It would look something like this and 8 man could either be 1A-1 or 2A-2
1241 Schools= 91 per division (Rough Estimates
7A-1 2920 and Up
7A-2 2550 to 2919
6A-1 2150 to 2459
6A-2 1900 to 2149
5A-1 1450 to 1899
5A-2 950 to 1449
4A-1 600 to 949
4A-2 400 to 599
3A-1 300 to 399
3A-2 225 to 299
2A-1 170 to 224
2A-2 125 to 169
1A-1 70 to 125
1A-2 69 or less
That was the original impetus for starting 8 man in 1958, as a bridge from 6 man to 11 man. There were quite a few schools that used it to bridge to 11 man, like Pflugerville, Allen, Jayton, and Forsan.I just think there needs to be another option. That’s a drastic step from 6 man to 11 man for schools that are on the bubble…too big for 6 man but not enough to be competitive in 11 man.
The only difference is one less back and two less linemen. Some states play 8 man on a 80X40 field, which makes it more of a power game, while other play on a 100X50 field which makes it more of a speed game.Is/was there any differences in the 11-man vs. 8-man rules? 8-man seems more similar to 11-man than 6-man, but I honestly do not know.
Yes, if you had a fast lineman or two, you could run a lot of bootlegs.Did teams in 8-man run a lot of bootlegs with the QB? I can imagine it would be tempting with less ineligible players, especially on the bigger field.
This probably is not the best site to generate support for the idea "the game [sixman] is too different from 11-man, so we need to bring 8-man back." I am sure many small 2A schools might agree with you, however.
Honestly, I went to my first 11-man high school game in years and found it kind of boring. I would much rather watch a competitive high school 6-man game than a competitive NFL or NCAA Game.
Granger or someone used to interview coaches via a podcast, and I remember Harley Ethridge said something to the effect of "sixman, it gets in your blood." That is a very poetic statement, and I think many would agree if they gave sixman a chance.
My mom told me one time she strongly preferred watching me play sixman over 11-man. 11-man is an extremely poor spectator sport because the linemen get in the way of the camera and/or view of the game. I could ramble on and on about this, but sixman is such an interesting game.