New Bremen is staying in the Midwest Athletic Conference after exploring other options

NEW BREMEN — New Bremen will remain a member of the Midwest Athletic Conference and field a football team in 2014, New Bremen Superintendent Howard Overman announced on Wednesday afternoon.

“After much discussion and weighing other options the New Bremen Schools will remain affiliated with Midwest Athletic Conference for all sanctioned sports,” Overman wrote in a written release.

New Bremen informed the conference at a meeting on Wednesday afternoon after the school’s administration mulled the idea of playing only a junior varsity schedule or leaving the conference it has been a part of since the formation in 1972. New Bremen held a town hall-style meeting in January to receive community input on the athletics programs and any possible changes in affiliation.

The situation centered around the Cardinals football program, which has fallen on hard times. The Cardinals have lost 14 straight games and have gone 4-36 the past four seasons in one of the country’s premier small-school conferences. At times last season the Cardinals — between injuries, attrition and a roster than listed 34 players at season’s start —  didn’t have enough players to hold full practices with contact.

New Bremen feels it can field a team, however.

“The number of football players is down due to smaller class sizes, but should be adequate to fulfill the conference obligations,” Overman wrote. “The community and school have rallied around the team and will support their competitive efforts in the MAC.”