ROSELLE, NJ – Amid a vast array of injuries experienced by the Jonathan Dayton football team over the past several weeks, the Bulldogs notified Abraham Clark school administrators their intentions to forfeit Saturday’s game in Roselle.
In a letter sent to Abraham Clark principal Rashon Mickens on Wednesday and obtained by TAPinto Roselle/Roselle Park on Friday, Jonathan Dayton principal Dr. Norman Francis, Jr. notified Mickens of his school’s intention to not play the varsity football game scheduled for Saturday and instead seek a forfeit-loss.
“After the game against Hillside on October 14, our roster was diminished significantly due to injury,” Francis said. “We dressed 31 players in this contest. In addition to injuries already befallen our players in this contest, three more of our starters have sustained injuries that have sidelined them for up to two weeks.”
According to Francis, Bulldogs players experienced injuries including a concussion, ruptured carpal tendon and a serious rib injury.
Francis indicated in his letter that Springfield Superintendent of Schools Dr. Michael Davino alerted Roselle School District Superintendent Dr. Kevin West of the cancelation possibility a few weeks prior.
“At this time we are experiencing an unprecedented number of injuries and our concerns for the safety of our players are mounting,” Francis said.
Additionally, according to sources, Bound Brook High School also intends to forfeit their football game against Roselle that is scheduled for November 5 due to continued injury concerns.
According to a Mid-State 38 source, conference president Nick Serritellla has called an emergency meeting of the football executive committee for Wednesday to hear from Jonathan Dayton athletic director Lance Jacobs and Bound Brook AD Anthony Egan.
This is a mandatory hearing according to conference and NJSIAA by-laws.
Until the conference committee submits their findings to the NJSIAA, a source told TAPinto.net that the games will be considered canceled/postponed, as only the NJSIAA or an athletic conference can officially declare a game as a forfeit.
The source expects conference and state officials to move quickly with the hearing process, as the NJSIAA deadline for football power points is November 6 and the games could effect Roselle's seeding in the upcoming state tournament.
Both Jonathan Dayton and Bound Brook play in the Mid-State 38 Union Division, which is comprised mostly of small, Group 1-level schools. The Bulldogs currently sit in seventh place with a 1-5 record, while Bound Brook leads the division with a 5-1 record.
Abraham Clark/Roselle is undefeated and leads the Mid-State 38 Valley Division, the conference’s Group 2-level grouping.
Emails to Serritellla and NJSIAA Assistant Director Jack DuBois, who oversees the state’s football program, were not answered as of press time.