South Sioux City and Columbus are projected to jump to Class A in football for the next two seasons, replacing Omaha Benson and Lincoln Pius X. South Sioux already is Class A in all other sports.
Preliminary three-grade enrollments (grades 9-10-11) supplied by the schools show South Sioux ranks 26th at 898, North Platte 27th at 860 and Columbus 28th at 858.
Pius X, which had an NSAA enrollment figure of 824 two years ago and 810 last year, is at 846.
Benson is at 795, down from 878 last year. Elkhorn South is at 793. Elkhorn South officials are expecting their school’s enrollment to grow to around 850 in another year.
Benson is expected to appeal to the NSAA board at its November meeting to be Class A in all sports, including football. The board is likely to grant the request except for football, based on discussion at the last NSAA board meeting.
The NSAA board has the authority to adjust the classification of schools in unusual situations. The last time an Omaha public high school was in Class B was Omaha Tech in the 1974-75 school year.
Seven to enter Packer Greats
Omaha South will induct seven athletes and honor a state championship team Wednesday night at a dinner at Anthony’s Restaurant.
Those being inducted are Paul Gerjevic (1933, wrestling), Robert Dostal (1953, baseball, football), James Hardick (1960, football, baseball), Bob Swanberg (1960, wrestling, football), Maurice Wade (1961, basketball, track), Tim Hendricks (1964, cross country, track), Mike Bugay (1985, baseball) and the 1976 boys gymnastics team. Gerjevic, Dostal and Hardick will be honored posthumously.
Achievement of Merit winners are the late Joe Cupich (1943), Westin “Danny” Hill (1945) and Phyllis Jirka (1955). The hall also will honor South boys soccer coach Joe Maass Jr. and contributor Anthony “Tony” Palma.
Around the state
» Jayden Swensen of Benson has set the Bunnies’ single-season (1,471 yards) and career (2,353) passing records entering his final game Friday against Omaha South.
» Norfolk got starting quarterback Taylor Reedy back in its lineup for last week’s 28-24 loss to Lincoln East after he had gotten hurt in the second game of the season. He completed 27 of 52 passes for 266 yards with two interceptions and three touchdowns.
» Newcastle’s homecoming six-man game against Lindsay Holy Family, at 6 p.m. Friday, will be the last contest for both football teams before they join ranks with other schools. Newcastle will co-op with Ponca and Holy Family with Humphrey High. This year, both teams dropped their eight-man schedules and played junior varsity schedules in six-man. Holy Family is down to seven healthy players.