Kennedy-Richmond cancels football season

Jimmy Durkin first found out about the Kennedy-Richmond football team canceling the rest of its season earlier today, so I picked it up from him, and here’s what will be in tomorrow’s paper.

The Kennedy High football team will forfeit the rest of the 2009 season due to a lack of healthy players, Eagles co-athletic director Harry Campbell said Monday.

“It’s just not a good situation with the injuries we have,” Campbell said. “We really decided last week. We felt it wasn’t really a good situation.”

Kennedy played four games this season, scoring a total of 12 points (all against Moreau Catholic) before canceling the rest of the season. The Eagles forfeited last week’s game against St. Patrick-St. Vincent with the hope that they would be able to resume play this week against Piedmont, but the decision was ultimately made to forfeit the final four games of the season.

The Eagles almost didn’t start the season due to low turnout, but ended up getting enough players to sign up to start the season. After co-coaches Delo Hilton and Clarence Johnson resigned in July, former Albany coach Anthony Freeman was tapped to coach the team on Aug. 28.

The late hire gave Freeman just two weeks to run practices before the team opened against Tamalpais-Mill Valley on Sept. 12. Kennedy lost that game 36-0.

Campbell said that his recommendation to the school’s administration before the school year began was that the school field a junior varsity team instead of a varsity squad to build continuity in the program.

“We should’ve gone that route to begin with but there were other powers that be that didn’t want us to do that,” Campbell said.

West Contra Costa Unified School District administrators met with school officials on Aug. 26-27. The following day, Freeman was hired and it was announced that the Eagles would play a varsity season.

WCCUSD director of secondary education Vince Rhea did not return a call for comment Monday afternoon.

Campbell said that the Eagles will continue to field a junior varsity team for the rest of the season, coached by Kennedy grad and ex-Nevada defensive back Mack Carminer. Campbell also said the varsity staff will remain with the program to help Carminer.

Richmond was the last East Bay football team to cancel its season early, forfeiting the final three games of both the 2005 and 06 seasons. Kennedy is the last public school from West Contra Costa County to win a North Coast Section football title, doing so in 1988.

Ben Enos


  1. Kennedy should go independent. All they are doing is f—— it up for everybody else. They should have done a J.V. team Hilton and Johnson are right. This happens too often.

    Jimmy, anyways word has it Kennedy is getting ready to be torn down for housing purposes.

  2. WOW,
    I am disgusted by any person that is worried about themselves or their team whil the kids of Kennedy are denied the opportunity to play a sport we all love. We check these boards becaus efootball has touched all of our lives. How about this idea, allow the Kennedy kids to play for De Anza for the remainder of the season. NCS implement an immeadiate multi-school agreement and allow kids to play! As for coaches bad mouthing Kennedy or lamenting the loss of one game remember a few seniors just lost the rest of their career.
    Furthermore I am sure there is a young JV coach or coordinator that should be tearing down the walls trying to take that job. Imagine, if your first season was considered a success because you finished a 10 game schedule, and year 2 you won 3 games.
    Stop leaving the kids of Richmond to figure out life on their own, and then blaming them for making bad choices.

  3. Pink Socks you dont all the way get it. Their coaches said they didn’t have enough for a Varsity team. They wanted a J.V. only squad. Hilton and Johnson are good coaches I know that for a fact. Ya let the seniors transfer and play for DeAnza. But that should have been decided on atleast by the end of doubles if one even existed. The city getting ready to close the school down anyway. Ya’ll (administration) should have took those coaches advice, good advice, and allowed those coaches to be coaches. Instead, now, there is a 4 team inconvinence and possible state issues on the line. And that may be a stretch but now my response is

  4. You think encinals state bid will be effected by a win over kennedy??? again WOW! but again no mention of what happened to the kids, maybe your kid was looking forward to doubling ghis stats againt kennedy

  5. No no no, maybe Im not being clear. The coaches blamed the administration.

    A smart parent would have assesed the situation before the season even started, been pro active, maybe went to a P.E. class and recruited 10 more players. Better yet, supported the coaching staff, loaded the J.V. team, and transfered the senior class to De Anza since you seem to like them so much. Its terrible for the kid’s to not be able to play I agree. I forgot about Encinal. It ain’t about Wow…

  6. The CIF is full of S*** when it comes to picking teams, the 2006 novato team got cheated out of state!, and the 2008 encinal team got cheated out of state for a 2 loss team!, the race was between, rocklin, paradise and encinal if anything, but st marys of stockton got the bid. I am saying they should do it on the fleid, instead of having a commite that really doesn’t know NOTHING… the winner of each section should play, instead of having “16 teams”! In nsc divison 3, they should Cut it down to 8, the winner of the section plays, another section champion. And at the end, they should decied, I know theirs lots of sections, that’s why I agree with the plus 1 formula instead of havinga 16 team playoff brackett that couldn’t even have 16 teams, instead they had 15 playoff teams, really embrassing. And with divsion 2, the should cut it to 8, tooo and have a plus 1 formula, this doesn’t make sence how a cardinal newman team plays ncs d2 but in state they play div 3, and encinal is ncs divion 3 and in state they play divsion 2, TERRIBLE call by ncs. Theirs lots of looops, and the only winners of this system is the mittys, los gatos, sacred hearts, and etc, NOT fair, were the only state that can’t get it righht

  7. And the cardinal newmans, bacially all the private schools, and theBIG losers are cv, novato, marin, oal section, sf section, haaal, bsal, accal, which is horrible, I wanna see a public school team in state *example * grant! I am sooo happy nor cal didn’t get embrassed, but their should be some sort of boy cott when it comes to this commite *bulls***

  8. Pink, Encinal has nothing to do with this. Coach Joe tried to drop his game with Kennedy Before the season even started. Jet Pride

  9. Kennedy should merge with Richmond HS for varsity football only and each school have junior varsity.They should play in the ACCAL and Salesian should move to the BSAL where they belong.Two day home games at Kennedy and three home games at night at Richmond HS. Try this for maybe 2-3 years and hopefully both programs numbers will improve and then the NCS and the ACCAL can review for futher action.

  10. Did grades have anything to do with it? In the past they have had issues due to grades. Football takes a lot of commitment from the players. I’m not sure if you can blame all this on the coaches. Administration and parents have a responsibilty also.

  11. de anza could use all the help they can get, at least they have enough so far, hope they can finish their season

  12. Let’s chill out on all the banter. As a Richmond resident, the problems surrounding Kennedy are layered and complicated. It has to do with culture, society, beuracracy, parenting, and economics. The bottom line is that WE as a community are failing our children in cases like this. Kennedy has a rich academic and athletic history that has fallen apart in the past 20 years. Talk to people who grew up in Richmond and they will tell you about better times.

    As a parent of a BSAL player I am surely disapointed that my child’s senior season will be shortened by one game. However, I will take the opportunity to speak to my student/athlete about why this is a reality. It puts into perspective how fortunate he is to be at a school like SM and how fortunate he is to have the opportunities he has. At the same time, I will ask him to look beyond his own reality to see what those players at Kennedy are facing. Those of us who are blessed to have opportunities to shine must always keep in mind those whose talents get snuffed out by circumstances beyond their control. The bottom line here is that CHILDREN are being left behind and denied the chance to fulfill their ultimate potentials. It is criminal. Blame is not easily placed on one party – that is the difficulty of it. Again, it is a failure of us as a community and a society. We MUST value our young people more.

    Coach T from Encinal is correct, he saw this coming. It happens almost every year. It seems as though the NCS and WCCSD is not in tune with this reality. What do they intend to do about it?? Let’s think outside of the box. The Richmond/Kennedy/DeAnza merger for sports is a good idea. DO SOMETHING. Sports is a vehicle to teach young people about life. Many of us have had our lives altered by sports. Not going to the pros or even D-1 colleges, but by learning how to compete, how to win, how to lose, how to be a part of something greater than oneself. When we can’t figure out how to give young people a consistent outlet for their growth and self expression, we deny them the opportunity to be the best they can be. We deny them the emotional, spiritual and physical health to be a productive member of our society. We deny them the chance to live out their dreams. Then we wonder why the murder rate in Richmond is so high.



    If the adults from the NCS and WCCSD can’t figure this out, they should stop taking their paychecks – they simply are not earning them.

    Sorry for the sermon, but it breaks my heart when children are forgotten by adults who are charged with being their advocates.

    Go Eagles and Oilers! Don’t give up.

  13. Well written and well said Panther Fan. Jet Pride!

  14. To Panther Fan:

    DITTO, well said, my heart breaks for Kennedy kids too.

  15. Panther Fan,

    Very well said. It’s obviously disappointing for the kids to miss out on a game, but we can’t forget the kids at Kennedy who now have to miss out on a year or a career.

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