Outside the Huddle is profiling which 10 area football stadiums it feels are the best around as we count down the days until (hopefully) the start of football season in August.
Each facility is rated on four factors – game night atmosphere, design, amenities and team success, as well as testimonials from the home team, the opposition and the enigmatic Blitz himself.
No. 8 Minnich Field
Location: Adams Central High School
First season: 1967
Playing surface: Grass
Named for: Rick Minnich, who coached the Flying Jets from 1977 to 2008. Minnich finished his career with an overall record of 236-136.
SCORE BREAKDOWN (1 – lowest; 5 – highest)
Game night atmosphere: 3.75
There is something about taking that curve going south on US-27 on a Friday fall evening and seeing the lights loom out of the cornfields on the left.
“The Landing Strip at Minnich Field” is basically in the middle of nowhere – Monroe, Indiana. Home of the Flying Jets of Adams Central High School.
Game night at Adams Central represents that. The majority of fans have been coming to games for years, even decades. It is a generational thing.
The student section isn’t huge (a 1A school after all), but do their homework and are knowledgeable.
There is nothing modern or eye-catching about Minnich Field, but the small-school feel – from the rickety bleachers to the cornfields surrounding the facility to the short, stubby uprights of the goalposts – is endearing.
The press box is sizable for a 1A school and the field is well manicured and taken care of.
Entrances and exits are easy to find and the parking lot is directly adjacent to the field, giving easy access and egress options.
Nothing overly amazing about the concessions and fare available, but Adams Central isn’t falling behind either.
Perhaps the greatest asset in this category is the relative proximity of the concessions stands. You do not have to wander far to get something to eat or drink.
Team success: 3.75
Adams Central has finishing with a winning record in eight of the last nine years, just a small sample of the decades of success the Flying Jets have had.
Minnich Field has been the home for the program since its first season way back in 1967. The name came later, but since the first sectional title in 1981, many a 1A team has seen its season come to a conclusion in the middle of nowhere in rural Indiana on “The Landing Strip.”
Arguably the biggest win in Minnich Field history came in 2000 when Coach Minnich and his Flying Jets beat North White 12-6 to advance to the state championship. One week later, AC defeated Attica for its one and only state crown.
Total score: 13.75
Adams Central coach/former player Michael Mosser: Obviously, I am biased. I not only coach there but played there as well. It’s just a special place for AC players, coaches and fans. Nothing better than being there on a Friday night. It is electric. The field too is always plush, our maintenance crew does an outstanding job. They take great pride in making sure the field looks great and it shows.
Bluffton coach Brent Kunkel: Adams Central always has full stands, knowledgeable fans and they support their team. They know when to get loud.
Many will scoff at Minnich Field being above the likes of Dave S. Walters Memorial Stadium on our countdown. Yes, in appearances and modernity, Adams Central’s facility lacks that in droves, but our ranking is not all about that. It is about feel, tradition and how Friday nights feel at the facility. When you take those things in consideration, Minnich Field earns its spot at No. 8.
COMING FRIDAY: No. 7