Jump to content



Coaches Moving Van  |  Scoreboard   |  Standings  |  Coaching Records  |  Stadium Project |  Team Pages

2017 NCHSAA Realignment

Photo

Are Bigger Gates on The Horizon in 2017 for Kannapolis Football?


  • Please log in to reply
25 replies to this topic

#1 Friday Nights in K-Town

Friday Nights in K-Town

    Established Member

  • Members
  • 767 posts

Posted 23 March 2017 - 09:36 AM

***********Can Wonder Football Expect to See Bigger Gates in 2017****************

 

Changing times, economic upheaval, realignment, and a changing social demographic in K-Town has taken a toll on attendance at Wonder football games over the last decade and a half from 2000 to the present date. I can remember a time you would be hard pressed to find a premium 50 yard line seat at Kannapolis Memorial Stadium on both the home and visitor's side for just about any given contest. Not so much true over the last several seasons in K-Town. A lot has changed since those glory days of packing out KMS for home football contests, and it's hard to lay blame on any one given reason for it. Here are just a few insights from the editor to make you go hmmmm, and if this makes others think, and some of the diehards to get off the couch and back out to the games this season then mission accomplished!!

 

It doesn't take a rocket scientist to know that over the last four years in the MECKA 4A conference, attendance at Wonder football games have taken a drastic hit. If I were a betting man I would say that attendance has fallen well over half of what the norm would be for Kannapolis football, and that even goes for the Wonder faithful as well. Sad to say, but I must call it as I see it. What has happened that keeps all those rabid Wonder football fans who use to pack KMS away from the stadium on Friday nights? Has loyalty waned over the years for the home team? Are fans finding other things to do on Friday nights? or have we come to a place in time where what we once knew and loved in K-Town is but a distant memory, never to be re captured?

 

Now I don't lay this problem solely on the steps of the Wonder faithful, because our rivals down South (the Concord Spiders) have experienced the same thing in their own home stands as well. I have spoken with several loyal CHS supporters who echo the same sentiment, and I have attended several CHS playoff games over the past several years, and attendance there is nowhere what it once was in the glory days of old.

 

When Cannon Mills corporation finally closed it's doors for good back in 2003, a good cross section of Wonder supporters were uprooted and disenfranchised. Many good folks had to leave Kannapolis to find work in other areas, and some moved out of town completely. If I had to place blame on anything for this attendance deficit, I would place blame on this more than anything else. Slimmer school participation among students is yet another big factor to consider. Kids today seem to have more things to fill their down time away from school than what most of us had back in the day. Social Media, telephones and an overall disinterest in anything school oriented is of no consequence to kids today. Spirit campaigns are almost non existent today. Pre game pep rallies for every game in the mornings or afternoon in the stadium rarely happens unless it's a rivalry game. I don't know about you, but those pre game pep rallies in the mornings were great, and really got us jacked up for the games on Friday nights. This is something you and I have no control over, and must be a priority for those who can make it happen.

 

I can definitely say that the move to the Charlotte based IMECK 4A conference back in 2013 was yet another fatal blow to attendance. A total disinterest in playing those Charlotte schools kept many loyalist away, and I can safely say that because many have told me this personally through conversation and emails. Personally, I have never seen a Charlotte school come into Memorial Stadium with a good crowd other than Charlotte Catholic. I can honestly say that watching their attendance over the last four years at Memorial Stadium, and even their own venues only confirms my feelings about them.

 

Today Wonder fans are full of high expectations for the start of the 2017 season, and our first year back home. By home I mean the South Piedmont Conference 3A classification which has been home for the Wonders in 70 of their 86 seasons from 1930-1986. Two stints in the old CPC 4A from 1977-1980 and 1985-1988, and then a stint in the NPC 3A from 2001-2004, and finally the MECKA 4A from 2013-2016. With the much anticipated move, Wonder loyalist who come to every game rain or shine are clamouring for better times and bigger gates, but is a move back home really going to be what the doctor ordered, or are we just going to find that expectation grossly unrealistic. -The editor

 

************************************Disclaimer***************************************

***This editorial viewpoint is strictly that of the editor for Friday Nights in K-Town, and does not reflect the collective opinion of the Wonder Nation or that of A.L. Brown football ***



#2 HoundBooster84

HoundBooster84

    Freshman Team

  • Members
  • 23 posts

Posted 24 March 2017 - 09:05 AM

Yeah those problems are definitely up in Statesville as well.  To address one of your points, do high school athletic departments need to get more creative with their social media to engage the younger generations and make them want to come to the games?  Maybe that could be added to the curriculum to the Journalism classes or something along those lines.  I feel like the average age in the stands seems to get older each year (not enough young blood wanting to regularly attend games).



#3 Chris Hughes

Chris Hughes

    Head Coach

  • Administrator
  • 17,996 posts

Posted 24 March 2017 - 09:08 AM

Yeah those problems are definitely up in Statesville as well. To address one of your points, do high school athletic departments need to get more creative with their social media to engage the younger generations and make them want to come to the games? Maybe that could be added to the curriculum to the Journalism classes or something along those lines. I feel like the average age in the stands seems to get older each year (not enough young blood wanting to regularly attend games).


Yes and yes. Great post.

#4 HoundBooster84

HoundBooster84

    Freshman Team

  • Members
  • 23 posts

Posted 24 March 2017 - 10:10 AM

Thanks.  I wish I could lay out a good basic game plan for schools to follow.  Unfortunately I don't like tweeting, using hashtags or even have an instagram account.  Fortunately, I'm pretty sure all the current high school students do.



#5 CatholicCougs14

CatholicCougs14

    Platinum Member

  • Members
  • 6,365 posts

Posted 24 March 2017 - 12:04 PM

I mean I think it differs from school to school. Catholic has no issue getting students out to games and you can find tons of young alumni roaming the stands at Keffer. 

I think that is because Catholic has done a great job getting school spirit up and fostering an environment where it is fun to go to games. AL Brown will have to do the same stuff, but also Kannapolis is seeing a demographic change. Many of the people moving into the area don't care about AL Brown unless their kids go there but after their kids leave the school they don't go to games if they did and don't really care. 

No clue what the fix is to this problem, but it seems to be a problem across many traditional rural schools like Kannapolis, Thomasville etc etc

I don't know if Kannapolis/Statesville counts as "rural" but you get my point.

There is no one fix for this, it differs from area to area. 


Charlotte Catholic Cougars

State Champions: 1977, 2004, 2005, 2015

22 Conference Championships

68 Playoff Wins

40+ Years of Excellence

Basketball:

State Champions: 2015


#6 RaiderDebater

RaiderDebater

    Varsity Team

  • Members
  • 245 posts

Posted 27 March 2017 - 06:31 PM

Same thing at Richmond County. If you came at 7:30, good luck finding a seat. But you can arrive at 8, and still get a decent seat. These small town schools in areas where textiles thrived have seen their better days, and regardless of what unicorn story people have been fed as of late, they're not coming back. People from these areas that come up are less inclined to move back. That's just the way of the world. It's hard to keep a good thing going when mama and daddy can't afford to keep the lights on because there's no work.

#7 CatholicCougs14

CatholicCougs14

    Platinum Member

  • Members
  • 6,365 posts

Posted 28 March 2017 - 07:06 AM

Same thing at Richmond County. If you came at 7:30, good luck finding a seat. But you can arrive at 8, and still get a decent seat. These small town schools in areas where textiles thrived have seen their better days, and regardless of what unicorn story people have been fed as of late, they're not coming back. People from these areas that come up are less inclined to move back. That's just the way of the world. It's hard to keep a good thing going when mama and daddy can't afford to keep the lights on because there's no work.

I think Richmond/Kannapolis are different. Richmond isn't growing I remember 2-3 years ago Chris said on here from 2000-10 the population of Richmond county grew by 72 people. Kannapolis/Concord and exploding right now just not with the type of people who will stay around and support a HS for 20-30 years after their kids graduate. Some might, but not many. 

You make a very valid point though about there not being as much work as there once was. Some mountain schools like Brevard are dealing with the same issues. 


Charlotte Catholic Cougars

State Champions: 1977, 2004, 2005, 2015

22 Conference Championships

68 Playoff Wins

40+ Years of Excellence

Basketball:

State Champions: 2015


#8 CatholicCougs14

CatholicCougs14

    Platinum Member

  • Members
  • 6,365 posts

Posted 30 March 2017 - 04:15 PM

Here's the bottom line. Kannapolis will never again be the Kannapolis of the 70s-90s putting 15K in their stadium and intimidating opponents. I'm not saying that because I'm a Catholic guy, I'm saying it because it's the truth. Long gone are those days, it's a different kind of people who are now moving into Kannapolis and they don't really care about Wonder football unless their kids go there. It's sad, but it's happening at many traditional "rural"(I put it in parentheses because Kannapolis isn't really rural but you get my point) across the state. 

Gates will be higher because of the local opponents, but never back to what they were 20 years ago. 


Charlotte Catholic Cougars

State Champions: 1977, 2004, 2005, 2015

22 Conference Championships

68 Playoff Wins

40+ Years of Excellence

Basketball:

State Champions: 2015


#9 84k

84k

    Established Member

  • Members
  • 980 posts

Posted 30 March 2017 - 04:40 PM

CC14,coulding agree with you more. Those were some good times between the 70-90. That stadium would be packed out and there's no doubt in my mind that a lot of those teams was already beating before the game started. Wished it would happen again that those crowds would be like that again but i know it will probably never happen again. Hopefully going back to the spc the crowds will be better then the mecka.

#10 BlueDevilsBiggestFan

BlueDevilsBiggestFan

    Platinum Member

  • Members
  • 2,004 posts

Posted 30 March 2017 - 06:02 PM

I thought AL Brown has had good crowds at games vs Mooresville but I understand it not as like was in 70s-90s and I will say Kannpolis does need a Bit of upgrade Football n Baseball field wise.

#WeAreMooresville

~~BlueDevilsBiggestFan~~


#11 CatholicCougs14

CatholicCougs14

    Platinum Member

  • Members
  • 6,365 posts

Posted 30 March 2017 - 06:06 PM

CC14,coulding agree with you more. Those were some good times between the 70-90. That stadium would be packed out and there's no doubt in my mind that a lot of those teams was already beating before the game started. Wished it would happen again that those crowds would be like that again but i know it will probably never happen again. Hopefully going back to the spc the crowds will be better then the mecka.

I think 100% the crowds will be better especially visiting crowds which will help the KTown gates for sure. Just not going to see the crowds that Kannapolis/SR and Concord used to draw due to the changes since the mill closed. It is sad, but times change. I do remember in 2010 I thought that crowd was intimidating(albeit I was a HS freshman), I cannot imagine a crowd of 12,000 or more Kannapolis fans and how intimidating that'd be to some teams. 


Charlotte Catholic Cougars

State Champions: 1977, 2004, 2005, 2015

22 Conference Championships

68 Playoff Wins

40+ Years of Excellence

Basketball:

State Champions: 2015


#12 Chris Hughes

Chris Hughes

    Head Coach

  • Administrator
  • 17,996 posts

Posted 31 March 2017 - 12:05 AM

All it would take for the crowds to come back is another championship run. You give that town another title and I betcha the fans would come back.

#13 CatholicCougs14

CatholicCougs14

    Platinum Member

  • Members
  • 6,365 posts

Posted 31 March 2017 - 12:23 PM

All it would take for the crowds to come back is another championship run. You give that town another title and I betcha the fans would come back.

In 3AA? Good luck! LOL
Also some fans might come back but youll never again see 12,000-15,000 Kannapolis fans at a game. Sorry itll never happen again

Charlotte Catholic Cougars

State Champions: 1977, 2004, 2005, 2015

22 Conference Championships

68 Playoff Wins

40+ Years of Excellence

Basketball:

State Champions: 2015


#14 SpidFan

SpidFan

    Established Member

  • Members
  • 479 posts

Posted 14 April 2017 - 12:11 PM

Demographics, social culture, safety issues, immigration, etc. all play a much bigger factor in HS football game attendance then we are willing to admit. As I walked into the KMS games last year to watch my nephews play it was not the same atmosphere I remembered from back in the 1980's. More heavy and dank checking over my shoulder to see if that student was cursing at me??? more than attendance has changed from what I remember enjoying back in the 1980's... And look I do understand all the PC influences and issues attached to a conversation like mine, but when we value what we measure and not just measure what we value we just might look at where we are rather than where we want to be.

 

We all know public education has been diminished over the past 30 years... also those institutions like Friday Night High School Football as a result.

 

Look at the meteoric rise in Home School and the Charter School's... a program like CCHS is insulated from a lot of this. Much has changed over the years in public education!

 

But welcome back to the SPC K-town!!! We've been missing you!!!



#15 CatholicCougs14

CatholicCougs14

    Platinum Member

  • Members
  • 6,365 posts

Posted 15 April 2017 - 10:19 AM

Demographics, social culture, safety issues, immigration, etc. all play a much bigger factor in HS football game attendance then we are willing to admit. As I walked into the KMS games last year to watch my nephews play it was not the same atmosphere I remembered from back in the 1980's. More heavy and dank checking over my shoulder to see if that student was cursing at me??? more than attendance has changed from what I remember enjoying back in the 1980's... And look I do understand all the PC influences and issues attached to a conversation like mine, but when we value what we measure and not just measure what we value we just might look at where we are rather than where we want to be.

 

We all know public education has been diminished over the past 30 years... also those institutions like Friday Night High School Football as a result.

 

Look at the meteoric rise in Home School and the Charter School's... a program like CCHS is insulated from a lot of this. Much has changed over the years in public education!

 

But welcome back to the SPC K-town!!! We've been missing you!!!

You make all very good points. Has Kannapolis been really affected by any Charters though? If they have then I'm unaware of them


Charlotte Catholic Cougars

State Champions: 1977, 2004, 2005, 2015

22 Conference Championships

68 Playoff Wins

40+ Years of Excellence

Basketball:

State Champions: 2015


#16 84k

84k

    Established Member

  • Members
  • 980 posts

Posted 15 April 2017 - 02:11 PM

You make all very good points. Has Kannapolis been really affected by any Charters though? If they have then I'm unaware of them


Not that i know of.

#17 MHSblueDevilsARE#1

MHSblueDevilsARE#1

    Platinum Member

  • Members
  • 6,178 posts

Posted 15 April 2017 - 02:39 PM

I know it's been discussed before-- but pep rallies.... school and community.... would go a long way in creating some excitement, especially for the big rivalry games. Whatever happened to the days of bringing in a junker car, painting it up, and smashing it up and stuff like that. Now a days you just have a bland spirit week and wear pajamas to school and all that--- that really doesn't create the excitement.. etc.

Case an point- Mooresville's when capps came in to be the head coach... they really engaged the student body... pep rallies, activities, all kinds of stuff. As a result- we ended up with one of the largest weekly student sections in our area, Capped off in 2011 when it was through the roof. Then the pep rallies and all of that fizzled away over time, and so did the excitement from the student body.

#18 CatholicCougs14

CatholicCougs14

    Platinum Member

  • Members
  • 6,365 posts

Posted 15 April 2017 - 02:40 PM

I know it's been discussed before-- but pep rallies.... school and community.... would go a long way in creating some excitement, especially for the big rivalry games. Whatever happened to the days of bringing in a junker car, painting it up, and smashing it up and stuff like that. Now a days you just have a bland spirit week and wear pajamas to school and all that--- that really doesn't create the excitement.. etc.

Case an point- Mooresville's when capps came in to be the head coach... they really engaged the student body... pep rallies, activities, all kinds of stuff. As a result- we ended up with one of the largest weekly student sections in our area, Capped off in 2011 when it was through the roof. Then the pep rallies and all of that fizzled away over time, and so did the excitement from the student body.

Getting the student body involved is key. I was kinda unimpressed with the amount of students at the Kannapolis/Vance game at KMS this past season. 


Charlotte Catholic Cougars

State Champions: 1977, 2004, 2005, 2015

22 Conference Championships

68 Playoff Wins

40+ Years of Excellence

Basketball:

State Champions: 2015


#19 Chris Hughes

Chris Hughes

    Head Coach

  • Administrator
  • 17,996 posts

Posted 15 April 2017 - 02:43 PM

Getting the student body involved is key. I was kinda unimpressed with the amount of students at the Kannapolis/Vance game at KMS this past season.


In my 40 years of being around K-Town, they've never had a huge gathered student body section like many city schools do. It's just not really been a thing there.

#20 MHSblueDevilsARE#1

MHSblueDevilsARE#1

    Platinum Member

  • Members
  • 6,178 posts

Posted 15 April 2017 - 02:49 PM

In my 40 years of being around K-Town, they've never had a huge gathered student body section like many city schools do. It's just not really been a thing there.


I think it could be argued that getting the student body active at sporting events hasn't really been a big priority there either would be my guess. But it seems like that's not a big priority just about anywhere now

#21 CatholicCougs14

CatholicCougs14

    Platinum Member

  • Members
  • 6,365 posts

Posted 15 April 2017 - 05:19 PM

In my 40 years of being around K-Town, they've never had a huge gathered student body section like many city schools do. It's just not really been a thing there.

Well they've never really needed it with thousands and thousands of nonstudents would pack the stands. Those days are now gone. You have a school of what over 1400 kids and you can barely get a couple hundred out to a game? That is not good. I think MHS#1 is right they need to start getting the student body involved if they want bigger crowds. 


Charlotte Catholic Cougars

State Champions: 1977, 2004, 2005, 2015

22 Conference Championships

68 Playoff Wins

40+ Years of Excellence

Basketball:

State Champions: 2015


#22 BlueDevilsBiggestFan

BlueDevilsBiggestFan

    Platinum Member

  • Members
  • 2,004 posts

Posted 15 April 2017 - 06:04 PM

I do agree that We need to get more engagement with the community, the students and Bring back Rallies and the excitement for Big Rivalry games

But,

With Student Body goes, I have been apart of Mooresville Student section since 2010, Mooresville best Student Section by far was 2011 and We were one of the Best during that season n we were futures a lot on TV, After 2011 it's kinda been a down hill slide but It hasn't Bad but it's been as great as it could. Students only go to Sports event to Hang with friends and other things n Not even pay attention to the Game at hand! The Student Demographic has changed They don't have passion or They don't care or whatever it is. Take Hopewell, Vance , MC or any CLT school , They have some Students come out but half of them aren't even paying attention bc they are on there phones or hanging with friends


I will say Kannpolis had a Decent Student Section when Mooresville was there in 2015 but they didn't do a lot. I think kinda hard get Student Body out when many just go to be there with friends and not even watch the game

#WeAreMooresville

~~BlueDevilsBiggestFan~~


#23 84k

84k

    Established Member

  • Members
  • 980 posts

Posted 15 April 2017 - 09:02 PM

In my 40 years of being around K-Town, they've never had a huge gathered student body section like many city schools do. It's just not really been a thing there.


Chris is right there has never been a student section. But the last couple of years they have been trying to start to build one up.

#24 CatholicCougs14

CatholicCougs14

    Platinum Member

  • Members
  • 6,365 posts

Posted 16 April 2017 - 05:13 PM

Chris is right there has never been a student section. But the last couple of years they have been trying to start to build one up.

Well that's good, even if some are there for the social aspect of it that's fine but it helps fill the stands and some would probably bring their parents along at least the younger ones. 


Charlotte Catholic Cougars

State Champions: 1977, 2004, 2005, 2015

22 Conference Championships

68 Playoff Wins

40+ Years of Excellence

Basketball:

State Champions: 2015


#25 MHSblueDevilsARE#1

MHSblueDevilsARE#1

    Platinum Member

  • Members
  • 6,178 posts

Posted 17 April 2017 - 09:59 AM

How often does ktown have pep rallies and such, if at all. I image it's a rare occurrence just like it is at most schools these days.




JeffChapman-Dynamic