Union High School is the latest North Carolina high school to drop varsity football for the 2021 season due to a lack of participation.
A 1A school in Sampson County, Union did not have enough student-athletes to field a team. According to athletic director Jonathan Bass, the team has only had about 13 players showing up for summer workouts and practices.
“We are hoping to pick up some more once school starts,” he said.
Union will attempt to field a junior varsity team this fall. The school hopes it will be able to field a varsity team again in 2022.
Bass said some of the contributing factors are an overall decline in enrollment and concern about COVID-19 among families.
“The truth is, it will be tough for us until all students are back in the building,” said Bass.
This spring, Union’s football team posted an 0-6 overall record. The Spartans were 4-8 and made the state playoffs, but posted a 2-7 record in 2018.
Union’s last winning season came in 2016 when the Spartans were 8-5 and advanced to the second round of the state playoffs.
Union is the second North Carolina school in the last week to drop varsity football. East Rutherford High School announced last week it was dropping varsity football this fall with hopes of returning to play in 2022.