Menasha, West De Pere glad to be back in the Bay

Menasha and West De Pere are headed back to the Bay Conference for football. (Doug Ritchay/WLUK)

MENASHA (WLUK) -- Practice for the high school football season starts in early September and for Menasha and West De Pere, they are back with familiar foes.

Both were expected to move from the Bay Conference to the Fox River Classic Conference this season due to the new football realignment, but that changed when the FRCC decided to move fall sports to the spring. So, the Bay came calling and made an offer the Phantoms and Bluejays could not turn down -- you want to play football this fall?

Both schools said yes.

"Quite honestly, we're excited to be playing, but we knew coach and our athletic director, Mr. (Scott) Eggart, were getting us to obviously to have a season and at this point we're just happy to be playing," senior quarterback Josh Blount said.

"We feel very blessed here at West De Pere," first-year coach Chris Greisen said. "Administration has been great, our district . I think we're all on the same page, we see the importance of being in school.

"I'm just happy we'll be able to play Friday night out at our stadium or other stadiums and going against those teams in the Bay Conference."

West De Pere has won 18 straight Bay games and has won or shared the last three league titles. Meanwhile, Menasha won or shared titles in 2016 and 2017.

Menasha coach Jeramie Korth, whose team beat West De Pere in the playoffs last season en route to a Division 3 state championship game appearance, said moving back to the Bay was an easy decision.

"For us, it's like just stepping right back in and looking at the conference, it's as strong as it's ever been this year," he said. "There will be a lot of really good competition and at the end of the day it's an opportunity for our kids to play football."

There won't be any state championship games at Camp Randall Stadium this season, but Korth said winning a title may not be what's important right now.

"I think we're going to be fortunate for every practice we get and ever game that we get," he said. "I think it's expect the unexpected."

For now the expectation is practice will start September 7th.

Follow Doug Ritchay on Twitter @dougritchay