When Statesboro Bulloch County Parks and Recreation Department athletics manager Dadrian Cosby saw the Portal girl’s flag football team on television during the Super Bowl he knew it was time for the recreation department to take action and begin to offer girl’s youth flag football in Bulloch County.
“We have talked about starting girl’s flag football especially with the success they had at Portal High School,” sad Cosby. “When I saw the Portal girls featured among the teams as part of the commercial in the Super Bowl, I just knew we needed to offer it here through the Bulloch County Parks and Recreation Department.”
Monday evening the first step was taken toward gauging the interest locally as 20 girls showed up for the first of two football camps that also will serve as an introduction for many girls. Some members of the Portal flag football team were there as well to help lend a hand.
“We were pleased with the turnout tonight,” said Cosby. “We had some that told us they couldn’t make it today but will be there Wednesday. We are planning to go ahead with the league regardless of the numbers. We may have to combine some age divisions, but we are going to make it work.”
The current plan is to have three different age groups starting with a 7–8-year-old division, followed by 9-10 year olds and then 11-12 in the oldest age group. Registration will take place along with the other fall sports which include boy’s flag and tackle football and soccer.
“We are planning to do it as a seven on seven just like they go in the GHSA,” said Cosby. “We would like to have 1-12 players per team. The rules will be the same as on the GHSA with a few adaptions depending on the age groups.”
Cosby is the 2021 state athletic chairman overseeing all tournament play for the GRPA in the state of Georgia. One of the first things he implemented after taking over last November was getting girl’s flag football instated in the state of Georgia.
“We knew flag football was coming, but the success at Portal really pushed us to get this going here as soon as possible,” said Cosby. “We are going to hold our first ever state championships in the GRPA in Cherokee County the first week of December.”
Cosby feels if a city the size of Portal can produce what they have been able to, he is confident there are other girls throughout the county that may be able to bring similar skill sets to the sport.
“We have a lot of fast girls here in town,” said Cosby. “I feel like with how popular football is and with the success at Portal Bulloch County will support the program. We hope to not only give them a chance to have fun but hopefully to be able to feed into the high schools in the next few years.”
Cosby knows that there are about 15 recreation departments that will be offering flag football this fall. He foresees about 30 percent of recreation departments will probably have flag football this year and he is hopeful that once they see success it will continue to grow.
The SBCPRD will hold another camp/information session for girls ages 7-12 Wednesday at 6:00 at Mill Creek Park at field 16.