A Lewis and Clark conference school is making the jump to eight-man football, and as a result, could end up departing the conference. The Schuyler County School Board approved the eight-man move Thursday night, and the Rams will begin play in 2020. Director of Athletics Chris Prewitt explains why Schuyler County is making the switch.

Schuyler County becomes the second area team in recent weeks to establish an eight-man football program. The Rams have not had a winning record in 11-man football since 2012, and have not won more than three games in any of those seasons. Prewitt says that was also a major factor in making the switch.

Knox County Superintendent Andy Turgeon is this year’s spokesperson for the Lewis and Clark conference, and they were surprised by Schuyler County’s move.

One of the articles in the Lewis and Clark conference’s constitution says each school must offer the same sports, which includes 11-man football. Turgeon said the conference’s superintendents will all meet in the near future to address Schuyler County’s participation in the Lewis and Clark. Turgeon was asked if the Lewis and Clark’s constitution was flexible to accommodate the Rams.

Prewitt says the Rams were in a tough predicament before deciding to move to eight-man football.

With all signs pointing to Schuyler County leaving the Lewis and Clark conference at the end of the season, Turgeon says they haven’t had any applicants to fill their spot.

Schuyler County joins the Keytesville/Northwestern co-op, which will make the move to eight-man football next year. North Shelby, the other eight-man football team in the area, made the jump from 11-man to eight in 2016. You can hear more from Schuyler County Athletic Director Chris Prewitt on the move to eight-man football below:

Schuyler Co. Athletic Director Chris Prewitt: