The year is 1907. Football is a brutal game with few rules and fewer pads. Boys are breaking bones and cracking heads and riding home in horse-drawn buggies or horseless carriages (the Model T didn’t even start production until 1908). It’s high time folks do something about it.
And so, football was banned at Bremen. It wasn’t just BHS, of course. Nappanee and other high schools and even universities were doing the same after a staggering 11 players were killed that year.
It would be 48 years before Bremen schools had a football team again.
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But by 1955, safety equipment was deemed sufficient, and a junior varsity team was put together by Don Bunge, who had come to BHS from Walkerton in 1952 to teach science and coach basketball. Two years later, the school completed a full-fledged football field complete with lights (and only lights).
Don Bunge was born in Waterloo, Indiana, in 1923 and attended Indiana Central and Western Michigan University. He served as a US Army paratrooper, 101st Airborne, during WW2. He went on to teach and coach at Bremen for 33 years, retiring in 1985. He was inducted into the Indiana Football Hall of Fame and gave his name to the field he had walked so many times.
Want one last pep talk from the coach?
Interested in more? Check out the Bremen Football Flickr albums!
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