Football may be returning to the N-O League

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 26 November 2019 at 9:05 am

For the first time since 1990 Niagara-Orleans schools may be competing together as a league in football next fall if a current proposal is adopted by the Section VI Athletic Council.

The proposal put together by the Section VI Football Committee would have the current Section VI Football Federation alignment replaced with a return to individual leagues including the N-O League, Niagara Frontier League (NFL) , Erie County League (ECIC),  the Chautauqua-Cattaraugus League (CCAA) and the City of Buffalo League.

The Section VI Federation was formed in the early 1970’s and the N-O schools remained together as a division until 1991 when the current enrollment based classification system (AA, A, B, C and D) was adopted.

That change resulted in Albion, Medina, Newfane  and Roy-Hart playing in Class B and Akron and Wilson in Class C. Roy-Hart later moved into Class C in 2006.

This past fall the 20 Class B teams were split into four five team divisions with Medina/Lyndonville/Barker playing in the B2 Division, Albion in the B3 Division and Newfane in the B4 Division.  That alignment had Albion playing divisional contests against distant foes Olean and Springville while Medina’s division foes included Dunkirk.

Akron, Roy-Hart and Wilson were all in the C North Division.

Now all six N-O football playing schools would be reunited as a league.

“It’s very interesting to us,” said Medina Athletic Director and variety football Coach Eric Valley. “It would do a lot to bring back some traditional rivalries and reduce some of the long trips some schools have had to make. And I think it would do wonders increasing interest for some teams which are having trouble with numbers.”

The proposal is slated to be voted upon by the Section VI Athletic Council on December 11. If approved the details of finalizing the league lineups and setting up a point system to determine show teams would qualify for the sectional playoffs would begin.

Ironically, neighboring Section V just this past fall switched from individual leagues to a Federation system for football.