Are the Flint Creek Titans done?
One of the more dominant football Co-op in the state of Montana could be over.
The FlintCreekCourier.com reported earlier this week that Montana High School Director Brian Michelotti denied the renewal application for the Flint Creek Titan Football Co-op. It appears the denial would be based on the participation estimates over the next several years. The Flint Creek Co-Op board will now have to appeal the decision at the Executive Board Meeting in Missoula, on January 14th.
The Co-Op was formed in 2014 when both Phillipsburg and Drummond both were on the brink of 6-man football. Two passionate, and proud communities separated by 27 miles, whom to put it nicely, didn’t like each other much, had to come together and form a co-op if they wanted to stay in the 8-man ranks.
Over the years, the one point that kept coming up for the success of the program in the first couple of years was that there weren’t any real decisions to be made about positions. Every starter was the clear-cut ‘guy’, there weren’t any arguments about one communities QB getting preferential treatment, those kinds of arguments that could sink a ship sitting awfully low in the water already.
The success of the Titans has been astounding, winning State Championships in 2017, 2018, and 2020. Falling in the Championship game in 2021, and second-round playoff losses in 2019, and 2022.
We can’t talk enough about the leadership that the Titans have had since year one. The winningest coach in Montana’s 8-man football history, and one of the most well-respected coaches in the state, Jim Oberweiser was at the helm for the first 3 years of the program. Coach Oberweiser retired after the Bob Cleverley All-star game in 2016. Control was turned over to Mike Cutler starting the 2017 season.
Under Mike Cutler the Titans went 44-4 in 4 years, making it to the state championship game in all 4 of his years as coach, and winning 3 of those contests.
That brings us to the current head coach of the Titans, former Drummond Trojan, Jason Ostler. In his first year, 2021, the Titans went undefeated to the State Title game where they fell to Thompson Falls, and they were able to fight their way into the playoffs again this past year, where they fell in the second round.
I find it crazy that I went from “how are these two schools ever get along long enough to play, let alone win?”
To my current feelings of, I hope they don’t break the Co-op up. Maybe it is because of the respect I have for Coach Oberwieser and Coach Cutler, a pair of gentlemen that I think the world of. Or, maybe I just enjoy the dynasty they have built in such a short time. Either way, I hope the Titans will be together come August.
We will find out come January.