Mahomet-Seymour looks to join the Apollo Conference

Mahomet-Seymour High School (MSHS) administration will recommend that the district join the Apollo Conference at the June 22 Mahomet-Seymour Board of Education meeting.The M-S Board of Education was notified that the school was looking into leaving the Corn Belt Conference at the May 18 board meeting.

High school principals in the Apollo Conference voted to accept MSHS for the 2017-2018 school year.

Superintendent Rick Johnston said, “Over the past three years, the two key factors in regard to conference alignment that have been emphasized by our staff are stability and competitive balance. Those two factors drive the issue as to what is best for student athletes and programs. It certainly looks like the Apollo affords us the best fit at this time.”

MSHS Principal Shannon Cheek said, “we feel like it is time to be proactive rather than reactive in regard to conference alignment based on recent discussion within the Corn Belt.”

Over the last few years, the Corn Belt Conference has seen Rantoul High School and Eureka High School move to a smaller conference because of declining enrollment numbers. Illinois Valley High School moved into the Corn Belt Conference for the 2014-2015 school year.

But Mahomet-Seymour continues to see growth with enrollments reaching 945 this school year compared to 853 in 2003-2004.

Current Apollo members include Charleston, Mattoon, Effingham, Mount Zion, Salem and Taylorville.

Athletic Director Matt Hensley said, “From a competition standpoint, we look forward to the competitive balance that the Apollo has to offer. More closely aligned demographics, being able to field teams at all levels, and the fact that we currently compete against many of their programs are appealing factors in the recommendation.

The Mahomet-Seymour School Board will meet at 7 p.m. at Middletown Prairie Elementary on June 22.

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