Short-staffed

The Rebels will field an 11-man roster in 2019.

The 2019 football season seemed to be in jeopardy for Coosa Valley Academy through this week. 

The Rebels only have 11 players on the roster, which made it impossible for them to compete in the AISA this season. 

On Friday, Coosa Valley Academy’s board of trustees met to make a decision on the upcoming season. The board decided to play 8-man football this fall. 

Coosa Valley Academy Athletic Director Shawn Baker said this decision was the best one for the kids.

“What we decided due to the number of players that we had on the team, we decided that we are going to drop out a year and try to rebuild a little bit,” Baker said. “Playing 8-man gives us a chance to still have football. 

“The school is excited about it. Everybody is on board with it. The guys are all behind it, and the coaches think that it will be best. It will give us a chance to rebuild, and we will eventually move back to 11-man football. 

“There are going to be injuries in football, it is part of the game. This way, it will save us on that. If there is an injury somewhere, we can keep going. It gives the guys something that they can compete in and be proud of.”

The Rebels will play in the Alabama Christian school league, which features Evangel Christian, Ezekiel Academy and Lyman Ward Military Academy.

“We are still a member of AISA in basketball, baseball, volleyball and all of our other sports,” Baker said. 

Interim head coach Jared Watson will lead the Rebels into 8-man football. 

Watson has been an assistant at CVA for five years. He was named the interim coach Monday after Jeff Edwards decided to leave the program. Edwards was taking over for Jamie Scruggs, who finished 4-8 last season. Scruggs left CVA to become the offensive coordinator at Brookwood High School.

“Jared Watson is going to stay with us,” Baker said. “He committed to stay with the boys. Travis Fields is going to be working with him. They have been working with the boys for a while now. They are going to get things going in a positive direction. 

“We are glad to have (Watson). He played at Coosa Valley in 1984, when we won the state championship. He played at the University of Alabama. The guys have respect for him, and they really like him.”

Baker hopes having success in 8-man football will help CVA get more football players to enroll into the school.

Baker said this decision gives the school’s three seniors a chance to enjoy their final season at CVA.

“We are glad to give our seniors something to look forward to this season,” he said. “We are proud for them.” 

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