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About Appeal tribune. (Silverton, Or.) 1999-current | View Entire Issue (Oct. 4, 2017)
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Wednesday, October 4, 2017
Silverton football head coach Josh Craig, 26, shows a play to his team during a practice. ANNA REED / STATESMAN JOURNAL
New leadership brings
youth, motor to program
Silverton's head coach, Josh Craig, is barely older than his players
GARY HOROWITZ STATESMAN JOURNAL
SILVERTON – During a typical Silverton High School football practice,
first-year head coach Josh Craig runs as much as his players.
After junior quarterback Levi Nielsen completed a long pass in practice
Sept. 26, Craig sprinted downfield shouting, “Good job! Good job! Here we
Maybe it’s because of his age. After all, at 26 he is one of the youngest
head coaches in the state.
“I can still run around with the guys, which is good,” said Craig, who has
always been a high-energy, positive fella. It’s in his DNA. “I still have a lot of
energy and I think the guys respond to that.”
Silverton is No. 1 in the Class 5A OSAA rankings heading into Friday's
Mid-Willamette Conference showdown at No. 3 Crescent Valley.
Clearly, the Foxes (4-0, 2-0 league) have responded to Craig’s coaching
“We love it,” Nielsen said. “When things don’t go our way you’ve gotta
have positive energy or you’re never gonna be able to get things right.”
Craig is not taking credit for Silverton’s success.
Former coach John Mannion, who resigned in April to become head
coach at the new Mountainside High School in Beaverton, left the program
in excellent shape. He had a 57-20 mark in seven seasons at Silverton, which
included three state semifinal appearances and a state runner-up finish in
“I inherited this great team,” said Craig, adding, “I’m not the one playing
hHead coach Josh Craig leads a practice on Tuesday, Sept. 26. ANNA REED / STATESMAN
See FOOTBALL, Page 2B
Salem schools face
lengthy travel in new
Five Salem-Keizer schools could join three Bend schools in a new league. FILE PHOTO
Five Salem-Keizer high schools will
play in a sports league with three Bend
schools starting next fall, under a final
recommendation released Thursday by
the OSAA’s Classification and District-
The final recommendation, reached
after a year of meetings, puts McKay,
McNary, South Salem, Sprague and
West Salem in an eight-team league with
three Bend schools — Bend, Mountain
View and Summit, which are moving up
“It’s going to be a hard sell to our
community,” South Salem athletic di-
rector Brian Armstrong testified at
Monday’s committee meeting.
That means Salem-Keizer schools
would have three-hour bus rides to play
league games at least two to three times
"Though it has become evident that
no current league is interested in add-
ing the three Bend schools, the group
believes that choosing the shortest of
the three travel options makes the most
sense when applying the criteria," the
committee said in the final release.
The recommendation next goes to
"It’s going to be a hard
sell to our community."
SOUTH SALEM ATHLETIC DIRECTOR
the OSAA’s Executive Board at its 9 a.m.
Oct. 16 meeting at the Wilsonville Holi-
day Inn. There will be one more oppor-
tunity for public testimony at that meet-
ing before the Executive Board votes.
The OSAA’s Delegate Assembly then
meets for a final vote at 1 p.m. that same
day at the same location.
The new classification will go into ef-
fect for the 2018-2022 time block. The fi-
nal recommendation included several
other changes from current leagues:
» West Albany would drop down to
5A from 6A to rejoin the Mid-Willamette
» Cascade would move from 4A to the
5A Mid-Willamette Conference. Cas-
cade had 14 people testify against mov-
ing up to 5A at Monday’s final meeting
of the committee. It would be the small-
est school in the classification.
See OSAA, Page 2B