Miamisburg success ignites new stadium quest

No longer are the Vikings an easy win. Head coach Steve Channell is in his third year after having won seven games each of the previous two seasons and making the Division I playoffs in 2013.

Miamisburg (2-0) will be favored to open the season with three straight wins for the first time since 1993 at Troy (0-2) today.

Channell often hears from longtime Vikings football grads and followers. The emails, phone calls and messages resonate with similar themes: Congratulations and keep it going.

These are the best of times for Miamisburg football. There have been better teams, but capacity crowds, Greater Western Ohio Conference South Division contention and the playoffs are all givens now.

As a result, Miamisburg football will eventually have a new stadium. There’s no beating that.

“The atmosphere and environment at Miamisburg right now is on a very positive trend,” said Channell.

A Campus Quest campaign to secure enough privately funded pledges to build a new stadium began last spring. Already more than $1 million — representing 70 families and businesses — has been secured.

An estimated $5 million is needed to complete the project. The new stadium would seat nearly 5,500 and like most GWOC stadiums, be fitted with synthetic turf. It would be located next to the new high school, where the football team now practices.

When completed it would relegate Harmon Field to a youth facility. Easily the smallest of all area Division I stadiums, Harmon has a capacity of about 2,300.

Ground hasn’t been broken yet for the new stadium. If it were up to Channell, it would be “as soon as possible.”

Eudon Holland (Miamisburg Class of 1951), made a robust pledge of $500,000. Other major contributors are the Hieronymus Family Foundation ($150,000), Valicor ($100,000 over three years) and Milano’s ($75,000).

Seniors Chris Young (RB/DB), Austin Robbins (DE), Camyrn Snow (WR/DB), Chris Fobbs (RB/DB) and Adam Giles (WR/DB) all were All-GWOC South last season and are key contributors again. The offensive line is anchored by Josh Myers, among the nation’s most sought-after sophomores.

Miamisburg won just nine games total the five seasons prior to Channell’s arrival.

“It’s special,” Giles said. “It feels good that we got to turn that around.”

The Vikings own wins over Bellbrook (38-10) and Fairmont (28-7). After Troy, Miamisburg will host resurgent Springfield and will be at Wayne, then lock into GWOC South play for the second half of the season.

“It’s been a remarkable turnaround,” Channell said. “That’s attributed primarily to the kids and the support of their parents and community. Fortunately, we were able to come in at a good time, put some pieces together and get it going.”

Miamisburg football is a hot home ticket now. New stadium pledge money comes easy. School levies aren’t a bone of contention anymore.

“We have a lot of positives going on with the school system right now,” assured athletic director Jason Osborne.

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