I moved to Mineral County in West Virginia just under two and a half years ago as the new pastor of a Short Gap church. A few months after I got here I read an article about Keyser High School and blogged about it here. I didn’t dislike Keyser, and as an objective observer I found the debt situation for the athletic facilities and what the school board did incomprehensible, and I stress that this was as an objective observer.
I’m not as objective as I used to be. I am heavily invested in the students of Frankfort High School and in this community. But just because I’m a huge Frankfort Falcon supporter, that still doesn’t mean I dislike Keyser High School. But last night at the Frankfort-Keyser football game, some bad feelings about them welled up in me.
And it’s not because they beat us 67-7.
- It’s because they kicked an onside kick when they were ahead 22-0 in the first quarter in a game in which Frankfort was obviously outmatched.
- It’s because, when the officials clearly dragged their feet to spot the ball when Frankfort had a fourth down and 9 as the first half was coming to a close with Frankfort behind 54-0, just so the game clock would be below 25 seconds so Frankfort wouldn’t have to snap the ball, Keyser called a time out to force Frankfort to punt.
- And it’s because, ahead in the third quarter 61-0, Keyser ran a fake punt to score a touchdown. It was the ultimate time for a fake, because it caught everyone by surprise. It was as surprising and unlikely as buying someone a Christmas gift in May.
I understand that I don’t know the history between the schools. I understand that I don’t have the hate that some of the locals have for each other – yes, I said hate. What else could you call the coach’s actions? I would have walked off the sidelines of the Frankfort Falcons during the game if we had done those things.
I believe this is something the Mineral County Board of Education should get involved with. I don’t know if this warrants suspending Keyser head football Coach Sean Biser, or reprimanding him, or forcing him to make what would likely be an insincere public apology. I don’t know what the answer is, but Short Gap’s taxpayer dollars help to pay his salary and his actions are indefensible. Those actions were a detriment to his own team, the Frankfort team, and the unity of this entire county.
(And as a disclaimer, these are my own thoughts and in no way reflect the thoughts of the denomination in which I’m a pastor).