HISTORY OF THE SAGAMORE ATHLETIC CONFERENCE
The first organizational meeting for the formation of the athletic conference was held in Lebanon, Indiana, on October 11, 1966. The early pioneers were Donald French and Roland Cutter of Brownsburg; Dale Graham and Bill Shepherd of Carmel; Ward Brown and Robert Barton of Crawfordsville; Raymond Kennedy and Richard Ricker of Frankfort; Kenneth Dooley and Jim Gabbard of Lebanon, and Maynard Wolf and Corliss LeCount of Noblesville.
On December 3, 1966, the school officials of Brownsburg, Carmel, Crawfordsville, Frankfort, Lebanon, and Noblesville announced to the news media that the new conference had been formed and had selected the name “Sagamore” – the Abnaki Indian name for the tribal chief or ruler, who was selected because of his qualities of leadership and his dignity as an individual, to honor the memory of the noble chieftains of the Indian tribes which once roamed our domain. Thus, the Sagamore Athletic Conference was born.
In the spring of 1967, champions in golf, track, and baseball were decided by conference play. Beginning in the 1967-68 school year, champions were crowned in cross country, golf, track, and wrestling by conference meets. Basketball and football champions were crowned by highest percentages of games won. To be eligible in basketball and football championships, a team must play at least three games with conference schools. At the present time, this has been increased to include all conference schools.
On March 13, 1967, the principals and athletic directors met to approve a procedure for determining the winner of an All-Sports Trophy, to be presented for the first time at the close of the 1970-81 school year. This is the formula agreed upon: basketball and football will receive 100 points; winners in baseball, swimming, track, and wrestling will receive 80 points; cross country, golf, and tennis will receive 60 points. The point value of each individual place will be determined by taking 80% of the point value of the preceding. Example, 2nd place in football and basketball will receive 80 points; 3rd place 64 points; 4th place 51 points; 5th place 41 points; and 6th place 33 points.
In 1975 conference officials changed to a six (6) point scale for the All-Sports Trophy which is explained in Article VI Section 2 Clause 3 of the constitution.
In the spring of 1973, Carmel announced plans to withdraw from the conference at the close of the 1973-74 school year. Carmel officials indicated a need to establish themselves as an AAA school in scheduling to make it possible to be eligible for the IHSAA football playoffs. Late that spring, North Montgomery was accepted as a new member replacing Carmel beginning in the 1975-76 school year.
In the spring of 1979, Noblesville announced that for reasons similar to those of Carmel, they too would be withdrawing from the conference at the end of the 1979-80 school year.
In the fall of 1981, Western Boone was invited to join the conference to replace Noblesville. Western Boone submitted a written application to the conference and on November 30, 1982, it was announced to the news media that Western Boone had become a member of the Sagamore Athletic Conference beginning with the 1982-83 school year. It was noted, however, that Western Boone would not compete for the All-Sports Awards until the 1983-84 school year when all schedule conflicts could be resolved.
In the fall of 1984, Southmont submitted a written application to join the Sagamore Athletic Conference. The application was received by conference officials at the September meeting, and a review board committee, consisting of athletic directors, was formed to visit and evaluate the school, facilities, staff, and students. Following the review committee’s report at the February meeting, Southmont was voted in as a full member of the conference – eligible to compete for the All-Sports Awards beginning with the 1985-86 school year. The February meeting of 1985 also witnessed the withdrawal of Brownsburg from the conference at the end of the 1984-85 school year.
In the fall of 1995, the SAC executive council began to consider the expansion of the conference. For approximately two years, the council reviewed and discussed different area schools that would be appropriate for invitation to the SAC. Several schools were discussed, particularly two, which made written application for membership. In the spring of 1996 serious considerations for expansion began to occur at each executive council meeting. By the spring of 1997, it was decided that if the conference did expand, it would add two schools to keep an even number of school memberships.
By the fall of 1997, serious dialog was established with Danville H.S. to join the SAC and keeping in mind the “expand by two thought,” Tri-West H.S. was also contacted for their interest. Over the winter months, formal invitations were exchanged with the two schools, and on January 20, 1998, Danville and Tri-West were both accepted into the SAC, expanding it to an eight school conference.
Danville and Tri-West become the tenth and eleventh schools to belong to the SCA and bring with them rich athletic traditions in competition. The two schools will begin to compete for the all-conference title in the 1999-2000 school year.