Week 15 Question: The current KSHSAA Football classifications are 6A, 5A, 4A, 3A, 2-1A, 8Man-I, and 8Man-II. What year did this current classification system go into effect?
In football, teams are placed by the KSHSAA into districts in both 8-man and 11-man competition, and the top two teams in each district advance to the state playoff tournament. There are eight districts in Classes 6A, 5A, 2-1A and both divisions of 8-man football, and 16 districts in Classes 4A and 3A. Football is the only sport where schools are contractually required to play other schools during the regular season. Football contracts are signed on a two-year, home-and-home basis to begin in even-numbered years.
In some sports and activities where not all small schools may field a team, classifications are combined for purposes of state championships. For example, in policy debate, there are state championships for 6A, 5A, 4A, and 3-2-1A combined.
Week 14 Question: What year did the KSHSAA start sponsoring state championship playoffs for football?
State titles before 1938 were claimed as champs by school or by a newspaper which more often than not names a school from the papers circulation area. These are not official state titles.
The Topeka Daily Capitol started a ranking poll in 1938, these are not official state titles.
Starting in 1946, the Associated Press had a ranking poll for Class AA State Champion. To many, these are official state titles
Starting in 1969, the KSHSAA started the state championship playoffs for football (and the 3-game District play in 1981). These are official state titles.
Prior to the playoff system, there was not a clear state champion because there were different polls from different areas. For example, in 1963 Mulvane (9-0) was ranked #1 in state for All Classes in one poll and Lawrence (8-0) was also ranked #1 in All Classes in another poll.
Below are last years state champions:
Yager Stadium, Topeka
Welch Stadium, Emporia
Salina District Stadium
Gowans Stadium, Hutchinson
Lewis Field Stadium, FHSU, Hays
Fischer Field, Newton
Fischer Field, Newton
Mulvane was ranked #1 in State/Class A in 1963, 1965, 1966, and 1968 (Class AAA in 1968).
District play was introduced to determine playoff participants in 1981. From 1981 through 2001, only district champions advanced to the playoffs. In 2002, the top two teams in each 11-man district began to qualify for the playoffs; district runners-up were added to the playoff brackets for 8-man in 2004.
Mulvane was district champs in 1985, 1991, 2002, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2011, and 2012.
Week 12 Question: Since 1978, what team has won its League/Division the most times in the CTL and AVCTL combined?
Since 1978, Andale has won its league/division more than any other team in the CTL and AVCTL combined. Andale has won league 16 times while Goddard is in second place with 10 league titles. Below is a table with the league/division winners since 1978 (as far back as I can find league standings).
Click the year to see the complete season standings for that year.
Week 11 Question: Mulvane's first high school football team was formed in the 1914-15 school year. What football rules change was newly implemented for the 1914 football season?
Several rules changes during the first third of the 20th century had a profound impact on the game, mostly in opening up the passing game. In 1914, the first roughing-the-passer penalty was implemented. In 1918, the rules on eligible receivers were loosened to allow eligible players to catch the ball anywhere on the field—previously strict rules were in place only allowing passes to certain areas of the field. Scoring rules also changed during this time: field goals were lowered to three points in 1909 and touchdowns raised to six points in 1912.
As a result of the 1905–1906 reforms, mass formation plays became illegal and forward passes legal. Bradbury Robinson, playing for visionary coach Eddie Cochems at St. Louis University, threw the first legal pass in a September 5, 1906 game against Carroll College at Waukesha. Other important changes, formally adopted in 1910, were the requirements that at least seven offensive players be on the line of scrimmage at the time of the snap, that there be no pushing or pulling, and that interlocking interference (arms linked or hands on belts and uniforms) was not allowed. These changes greatly reduced the potential for collision injuries. Several coaches emerged who took advantage of these sweeping changes. Amos Alonzo Stagg introduced such innovations as the huddle, the tackling dummy, and the pre-snap shift. Other coaches, such as Pop Warner and Knute Rockne, introduced new strategies that still remain part of the game.
Week 10 Question: Mulvane football player and graduate Barry Milligan went on to play college football at Cowley County CC. Cowley's football program was ultimately discontinued. What year was the last year that Cowley County had a football program?
Barry Milligan was a Running Back for Mulvane from 1980 to 1982 and graduated in 1983. Barry finished his career with 1091 rushing yards and was the top scorer for Mulvane in the 1982 season with 25 points. He went to Cowley County Community College and played football in the 1983 season. Unfortunately that was the only season he played for Cowley because the football program was discontinued after the 1983 season.
1983 Cowley County Football Team
Week 9 Question: Up until the early 1950's, Mulvane played Leon High School many times in football. What was the Leon mascot in the early days of Leon HS football?
The Leon High school sports teams were the "Cowpunchers" back in the 30's and 40's. Mulvane first played Leon High School in football in 1934, where the Wildcats beat the Cowpunchers 31-0. The Mascot was changed to the "Lions" sometime in the mid to late 1940's. The Leon Lions is first referenced in the newspaper when Mulvane played them in 1947. Mulvane's last time to play Leon High School was in 1953, where the Wildcats and the then Lions tied 13-13. Leon High School is now Bluestem High School and their mascot is still the "Lions" to this day.
Week 8 Question: The 1962-65 Mulvane football standout Steve Carmichael went on to Kansas University and had a good college career. Steve was getting some NFL looks before injuries ended his football career. What was one of the NFL teams scouting Steve?
Steve Carmichael HS Senior year 1965
Steve Carmichael played for Mulvane from 1962 to 1965, during those years Mulvane was 34-2 with the two losses occuring during his freshman year in 1962. Steve was an All-State selection his senior year with Mulvane and went to Kansas University after high school and had a good career in college.
His senior year at KU in 1969, Steve:
Earned Academic All Conference
Was teammates and went to Orange Bowl in 1969 with John Riggins (NFL Hall Of Fame for Redskins)
Was Co-Captian of the team along with Larry Brown (who won 4 Superbowl Rings with Pittsburgh)
Steve was getting some looks from NFL teams, one of them being the Pittsburg Steelers. According to his son Jake Carmichael (1992-1995 Mulvane Football Running Back) Steve got requests from the Pittsburg Steelers and the Washington Redskins.
Unfortunately Steve had some injuries that prevented him from pursuing a career in the NFL.
Steve Carmichael KU Senior year 1969
Steve Carmichael KU Senior year 1969
Steve's picture hangs on the "Wall Of Fame" in the hallway at Mulvane High School.
Week 7 Question: The current Mulvane High School newspaper "Cat Tracks" has been published every year for some time. What was the first year the "Cat Tracks" was published?
In 1995, English Teacher Charlie Mason submitted entries into a contest for the name of a new student produced High School Newspaper (the first one in over a decade at the time). "Cat Tracks" was Charlie's winning submission for the name of the newspaper and it has remained that name for the past seventeen years.
The current Cat Tracks is published by Coach Abasolo's Journalism Class.
Week 6 Question: Former Mulvane football player and graduate Merwin Wilson was inducted to the KSHSAA Hall of Fame in 1977 as a football coach. What was one of the schools he coached at during his coaching career?
Merwin Wilson in 1928
Merwin Wilson was a student athlete/football player who graduated from Mulvane in 1929. After high school he attended and graduated from Fort Hays State College and began his teaching/coaching career. Merwin coached at several schools including Larned, KS. While in Larned, he began the annual Larned Relays in 1953. Although he coached all sports, his specialty was football. Coach Wilson was noted for his devotion to hard work, his influence for personal integrity, and good sportsmanship.
Coach Wilson also coached and taught at Cawker City, Hunter, Alden, Axtell, Downs, Haven, Lewis, and Offerle. At Lewis his teams had two undefeated seasons and at Lyndon the last two years his teams won nine games and lost one - both losses coming in the state playoffs.
Coach Wilson passed away on May 28, 1976 and was inducted posthumously into the Kansas High School Activities Association Hall of Fame at Emporia on March 12, 1977.
Week 5 Question: In the early 50's, the Mulvane News ran a section in the newspaper where the MHS Wildcat mascot would ask students questions about student life once a week. What was the name of the Wildcat mascot at this time?
In the 1952 newspaper there was a small section called "Willie The Wildcat" where Willie would pose questions to Mulvane students about student life. Questions such as "If you had your choice what would you rather be?", "What is your pet peeve on a date?" - (which yielded some intersting answers) and "What would you do if you could be superintendent for one day?". This feature was pretty short lived as it's only found during the spring semester in 1952. Today the Wildcat's name is "Victor E. Wildcat".
Week 4 Question: The old field on Mulvane street was basically just pasture grass that they painted into a football field. What was one of the distinct issues they had with the old field?
The field was uneven from one end zone to the other. The West endzone was higher than the East endzone. Either way, one team was always running uphill while the other team was running downhill.
Week 3 Question: One of the end zones on the old football field on Mulvane Street was particularly interesting and didn't consist of pasture grass like the rest of the field. What was the end zone made from?
The "West" end zone in the old football field was covered in Coal Cinders. This is where they dumped the cinders after the coal was used in the furnaces to heat the building. The "East" endzone consisted of pasture grass like the rest of the field.
Week 2 Question: Where was the previous location of the Mulvane football field prior to moving to the current location of Lyle Couch field in 1955?
Up until 1955, Mulvane's football field was located just north of the old Jr High/High School (the current location of the Mulvane Rec Center) on Mulvane Street. That building was the high school at that time until the new high school on second street was completed in 1954. At that time there was only one building of classrooms and one building with the gymnasium. The rest of the buildings were added on at a later time.
(Click image for higher resolution)
The above is a satellite image of the current Mulvane Rec Center. The "approximate" location of the old field is layered in (see the green field just north of the parking lot). The field ran east-west and was one of the very few fields in the state that ran east-west. Most field run north and south.
(Click image for higher resolution)
The above is a picture of the marching band on the old field around 1952. Notice the fancy stands they had back then. Wood benches only 3 rows high.
Week 1 Question: The Mulvane Football Stadium "Lyle Couch Stadium" is undergoing reconstruction with a new turf field. What year was the first game played at the current location?
The Old Mulvane High School building on second street was completed in 1954. The first football game played at the current Lyle Couch field location was vs Derby on September 23, 1955. Derby edged out the Wildcats 6-0 in front of a record breaking crowd. The previous location of the field is the subject of a future trivia question.
2011 Season Trivia
Week 11 Question: The Mulvane Football Stadium "Lyle Couch Stadium" is named after the Mulvane resident Lyle Couch. What capacity did Lyle serve in the Mulvane School District?
Lyle Couch was born on Sept 9, 1928 in Helena Oklahoma. He graduated from Helena High School in 1946. Lyle received his bachelor's degree from Northwestern State College of Alva Oklahoma in 1952. He received his Master's degree from Wichita State University in 1962. He was also a veteran of the U.S. Marines.
Lyle Couch was the Principal of the Mulvane High School for 8 years, joining the staff in 1963. He was highly regarded by his peers, students, and the community. He played a vital part in the administration of Mulvane High School where his knowledge, his capability, and his interest in education and the community helped provide the outstanding educational program in Mulvane. He encouraged all students to practice good study habits and to be impatient to learn. His interest in the students and the school gained him respect and admiration not only from the students and faculty but also from the Mulvane community. He loved sports, especially football, and he was tougher on the athletes and cheerleaders more than anyone else it was drilled in the athletes that they were representing MHS and they should be held to a high standard. He is remembered by friends and family as tough with a soft heart.
During the fall of 1970 Lyle was diagnosed with a brain tumor. During his sick leave, Jerry Webster (a former Mulvane student and star athlete) took over the duties of Principal. Lyle passed away on November 23, 1971. The football community, faculty, and students held several fundraisers to help the family and the school board led by Superintendent Dean Parks honored Lyle Couch by naming the football stadium after him.
Week 10 Question: Mulvane has played many teams throughout its 98 years of football. What team has Mulvane played more times than any other team?
Answer:From 1914 to 2011, Mulvane has played Valley Center 82 times, sometimes more than once in a single season. The record between Mulvane and Valley Center with the data available is Mulvane-40 Wins : Valley Center 41 Wins (and one result/score unknown in 1940).
The table below shows the 10 teams that Mulvane has played the most times as of the 2011 Season:
Week 9 Question: In the 1919 football season, during one of the away games a small brawl broke out in the stands between the Mulvane and Home town spectators. Who was Mulvane playing when this happened?
Answer: On October 3rd, 1919 Mulvane traveled to Douglass for a Friday football game. Mulvane fell to Douglass 7-18 and according to the newspaper accounts, "the sideline was about as strenuous as the game. The Douglass rooters seemed to have the idea that the proper way to support their team was to make it unpleasant for their visitors. There was much snatching of colors, a scrap or two, and some unseemly hair pulling. One Mulvane girl had her watch broken, her beads scattered, anther was badly scratched, and a small boy had his clothes damaged in a roughing that a crowd of youngsters gave him."(Mulvane News 10-9-1919)
Mulvane did play Douglass again in the last game of the 1919 season and lost 0-18 but there are no reports of crowd shenanigans from that game. That game was played at Mulvane.
Week 8 Question: The Mulvane High School mascot has not always been the "Wildcats". What other mascots has Mulvane High School been?
Answer: Mulvane adopted the "Wildcat" as her mascot around 1925. Up until then there was was not much mention of an official mascot, but in 1922 a newspaper article reference "The Mulvane Lions" (9-28-1922). The same football season the newspaper referenced "The Mulvane Bears" (11-9-1922). It's unclear why they referenced two mascots in the same season. The first mention of the "Wildcat" I can find is in the newspaper article for the game vs Douglass on 11-5-1925.
Week 7 Question: How many "leagues" has the Mulvane Football been a part of since the first team formed in 1914? (not counting any division changes within a league)
Answer: From the evidence compiled in old newspaper articles, Mulvane has been part of four leagues since the first team formed in 1914 - Sedgwick County League, Sumwick League, Chisholm Trail League, Ark Valley Chisholm Trail League.
1914 - 1938: Sedgwick County League
1939 - 1954: Sumwick League
1955 - 2003: Chisholm Trail League
2004 - Present: Ark Valley Chisholm Trail League
Some years in the 30's, the Sedgwick County league champs would go on to play other league champs as a season closer game and the winner would be the "Mythical Dual League Champ". Mulvane were dual league champs in 1933, 1934, lost to Caldwell in 1935, and tied with Caldwell in 1936.
Week 6 Question: The Mulvane High School colors have not always been green/white. What other colors has the Mulvane High School been?
Answer: Up until around 1920, the Mulvane school colors were the Orange and Black. The 1917 yearbook was titled "Orange and Black" (see image below)
The year 1920 was the first year that Mulvane's Green/White colors were referenced in the paper. In fact this came about in an article about an incident where some unruly students marked up Belle Plaine's School with green paint prior to the scheduled football game, which was subsequently cancelled.
Week 5 Question: What is the most points a Mulvane Football team has scored in a single game?
Answer: On October 27, 1921 Mulvane beat Clearwater 105-0. That year Mulvane outscored the opponents 441-9, which included two teams that forfeited their second games vs Mulvane (Valley Center and Clearwater). Mulvane was Sedgwick County League Champs.
Mulvane's 1921 schedule was:
vs. Valley Center: 39-6 ( W )
vs. Cheney: 46-0 ( W )
vs. Viola: 62-0 ( W )
vs. Mt. Hope: 81-0 ( W )
vs. Clearwater: 105-0 ( W )
vs. Cheney: 7-3 ( W )
vs. Valley Center: 1-0 ( W )
vs. Mt. Hope: 27-0 ( W )
vs. Clearwater: 1-0 ( W )
vs. Viola: 72-0 ( W )
Week 4 Question: The years 1920-1923 featured Mulvane's football star and outstanding athlete "Frank Harris" in Football, Basketball, and Track. Frank almost missed his sophomore season of Track due to a what leg injury?
Frank Harris played on the football team for four years, three as a halfback and one as a fullback. Four years on the basketball team as guard and three years he was the high point man in track. He was almost put out of track during his Sophomore year due to a gun shot wound in his leg. He still ran track that year and was still able to place some 2nd and 3rd places in the 50, 100, and 220 sprints despite his leg being in bad shape.
A yearbook quote described Frank in this fashion: "If things were divided up on a basis of reward for faithfulness and Frank were given his share, there would be little left for the rest. For absolute loyalty to MHS and general stick-to-itiveness, Franks puts everyone else in the shade. He never says anything about it but he just goes ahead and does the square thing by everybody."
How did he get shot? A newspaper article from 3-10-1921 has the following story: Shot Through the Leg - Last Sunday afternoon Frank Harris, who works in the Dye restaurant near the Santa Fe Station, was the victim of a peculiar accident, but which fortunately did not have serious results. He was washing dishes just after noon and in whipping a dishcloth off a nail under the counter he jarred a .38 caliber revolver from the nail at the same time. The gun fell to the floor and was discharged, the bullet boring a clean hole through the calf of Frank's right leg. He was really more scared than hurt. He was able to hobble across the street to the office of Dr. Michener and was given prompt attention. The wound was only a slight one and no serious results are anticipated.
Apparently they thought the wound wouldn't be serious, but a newspaper article about a track meet on 5-19-1921 said his leg was in bad condition.
Week 3 Question:1914 was the first year that Mulvane ever had a football team. Most kids had never seen a football game and had no idea what the game was all about. What was one of the problems the coaches ran into during the first weeks of practice?
Answer: In a newspaper article "Lecture In Football" it talks about how many of the boys have never seen a football game and only two players had any prevoius experience. In the first week of practice the coaches were having problems with the boys grasping the concept of team instead of the individual, in fact some of the kids were smoking pipes and cigarettes on the sidelines, some while in their football uniform.
The coaches eventually got the boys turned around and went on to have a 2-2-1 season in 1914 as well as a string of winning seasons until they went 2-4-1 in 1919.
Week 2 Question: In 1918 the Mulvane Football season was cut short after 2 games and the schools closed down due to the 1918 Spanish Flu Pandemic. Where was this disease first observed?
Answer: In the United States, the disease was first observed at Haskell County, Kansas, in January 1918. On 4 March 1918, company cook Albert Gitchell reported sick at Fort Riley, Kansas. Within days, 522 men at the camp had reported sick. By March 11, 1918 the virus had reached Queens, New York.
Although the first cases were registered in the continental U.S. and the rest of Europe long before getting to Spain, the 1918 pandemic received its nickname "Spanish flu" because Spain, a neutral country in World War I, had no censorship of news regarding the disease and its consequences. Spanish King Alfonso XIII became gravely ill and was the highest-profile patient about whom there was coverage. Hence, the widest and most reliable news coverage came from Spain, giving the false impression that Spain was most affected.
Soldiers from Fort Riley, Kansas ill with Spanish influenza at a hospital ward at Camp Funston
in 1918, where the worldwide pandemic began.
Week 1 Question: In the 1920's and 1930's one of Mulvane's main rivals was Belle Plaine. What was Belle Plaine's mascot during this time?
Answer: The Belle Plaine sports teams were the "Applepickers" up until sometime around the late 1940's or early 1950's where they changed to the "Dragons" which is their current mascot today.