Dalton High football has a history of making its alumni proud. In the 1960s, it became the first high school football team in the state to use players’ initials on their warmups. Today, the tradition continues with the addition of the Jean Hofstetter Warmup Fund. It features a bake sale and raffle, a catalog, and cash-and carry vendors. A fund has been set up in honor of the deceased player.
The first mention of Dalton High football can be found in the October 1935 edition of The Dalton Citizen. A lack of funds had prevented the school from fielding a football team for the past two years. However, a group alumni pledged their support to the team and the program. On October 4, 1935, the football team played its first game at Harmon Field against Lafayette. The season was also the school’s first to play a night game, and four new bleacher sets were added. In the 1980s, the school built a Field House and the press box. It was built at a cost of approximately $80,000 and has been used for all football games since.
Following the WCAL championship, Dalton will play in the state championship against Cohasset. The Panthers boast a strong football program, and will be the state’s top seed. Chris Easterling, a Dalton high school quarterback, played like an old friend. Dalton’s athletic director, Steve Watkins, is pleased that his team will once again be a part of a progressive and innovative tradition.
After graduating from Wooster College, Jim McFarren began coaching at Dalton High School. His teams won more than 70% of their games and finished 131-52-2. This record is unmatched by any other coach from Dalton. He was later inducted into the Ohio High School Football Coaches Hall of Fame and the Wayne County Sports Hall of Fame. He was elected principal after he retired.
After the 2015 season, Dalton High School’s football team started strong and reached the state semifinals. However, they’ve missed the playoffs three out of five seasons. This season, Dalton is playing in Class 6A. There are no other schools in the area that play football close to Dalton. The closest team in the current two-year cycle is Rome. Land is one of the most respected coaches in the state.
Zeisig was shocked by Rick Davidson’s 1995 actions. Zeisig was a radio DJ who used to work in the same area as Rick Davidson during games. The two had met while working at a radio station in the area. Both men “lived in Dalton for several years. Upon learning of Rick Davidson’s actions, Zeisig said he was “in shock” when he heard about the incident. Zeisig spoke out about his harrowing reaction in an interview.