With an opportunity to continue their numbers-strapped football programs, Camden Hills of Rockport and Mount View of Thorndike took advantage of a relatively new Maine high school football division, one that decreases the number of players per team on the field from the traditional 11 to eight.

After applying in recent months, the Windjammers and Mustangs have been approved to play in the Maine Principals' Association's eight-man division starting in the fall of 2020.

The division has been operational for a couple of years.

Click for our most recent previous story on this subject.

The MPA's football committee met on Monday, April 13 to review applications for changes in football classification. Six requests — including from Camden Hills and Mount View — were approved and the committee made the required changes to the classification structure.

With an enrollment of 693, Camden Hills has the size to play in Class B, but has played in lower classes in recent years. Mount View, with 374 students, has played in Class D in recent seasons.

Both schools decided to apply for inclusion in the eight-man division due to the football programs' overall lack of numbers.

The eight-man division has a large school division (enrollment of 375 and higher) and small school division (374 and lower).

Camden Hills will play in the large school division and Mount View the small school division.

The eight-man large school teams, with enrollments listed, include: Mount Ararat of Topsham, 709; Camden Hills, 693; Gray-New Gloucester, 596; Morse of Bath, 583; Lake Region, 535; Mount Desert Island, 531; Waterville, 516; Yarmouth, 509; Ellsworth, 455; Spruce Mountain of Jay, 402; Cheverus of Portland, 394; and Mountain Valley of Rumford, 375.

The eight-man small school teams, with enrollments, include: Washington Academy of East Machias, 404; Mount View, 374; Maranacook of Readfield, 361; Mattanwacook Academy of Lincoln, 341, Orono, 338; Houlton, 336, Sacopee Valley of Cornish, 310; Dexter, 290; Traip Academy of Kittery, 255; Old Orchard Beach, 243; Dirigo of Dixfield, 219; Boothbay Region, 199; Telstar of Bethel, 199; and Stearns of Millinocket, 168.

According to the MPA website, below are the rule modifications made when a school moves from 11-man to eight-man football:

• Each team plays with eight players.

• The field will be 100 yards between goal lines and 40 yards wide, with 15-yard sidelines.

• 7-yard marks shall be located 7 yards from each sideline. 7-yard marks are not necessary if the field is visibly marked.

• The free-blocking zone is a square area extending three yards either side of the spot of the snap and behind each line of scrimmage.

• The outside 9-yard mark and between 9-yard mark conferences shall be held outside or between the 7-yard marks, respectively.

• The kicker is required to have at least three players on each side of the ball.

• There must be at least five players on the line at the snap.

• All jersey numbers are considered legal.

• After the ball is marked ready for play, each offensive player, along with any offensive substitutes, must have been momentarily, between the 7-yard marks, before the snap.

• Each offensive player, regardless of jersey number, who at the snap was on an end of the scrimmage line (total of two) and each offensive player who at the snap was legally behind the line of scrimmage (total of three), is eligible.

A standard high school football field is 100 yards long (with 10-yard long end zones) and 53 1/3 yards (160 feet) wide.

The eight-man state championship game will be on November 16 at a site and time to be determined.

Other Midcoast high school football teams include Medomak Valley of Waldoboro, Oceanside of Rockland and Belfast, all of which continue to compete in 11-player leagues. In fact, all compete in the same class and region — Class C North.

The following are the other football schools in the classes and regions in the state:

Class A (950 enrollment and higher) — Thornton Academy of Saco, 1,476; Lewiston, 1,420; Bangor, 1,202; Bonny Eagle of Standish, 1,094; Oxford Hills of South Paris, 1,021; Edward Little of Auburn, 998; Sanford, 982; and Scarborough, 973.

Class B (600-949) — South: Deering of Portland, 929; Massabesic, 927; South Portland, 898; Noble, 894; Gorham, 819; Marshwood of Eliot, 784; Biddeford, 764; Portland, 757; and Kennebunk, 717.

North: Windham, 941; Skowhegan, 782; Messalonskee of Oakland, 735; Brunswick, 714, Falmouth/Greely of Cumberland, 710; Cony of Augusta, 673; Brewer, 672; Mount Blue of Farmington, 666; and Lawrence of Fairfield, 610.

Class C (420-599) — South: Westbrook, 748 (waiver); Gardiner, 622 (waiver); Fryeburg Academy, 575; York, 553; Leavitt of Turner, 551, Cape Elizabeth, 514; and Wells, 422.

North: Hamdpen Academy, 770 (waiver); Nokomis of Newport, 583; Medomak Valley, 559; Hermon, 508; Belfast; 505; Old Town, 503; Oceanside, 474; Winslow, 438; and Maine Central Institute of Pittsfield, 433.

Class D — (up to 419) — Freeport, 525 (waiver); John Bapst of Bangor, 465 (waiver); Poland, 463 (waiver); Foxcroft Academy of Dover-Foxcroft, 415; Oak Hill of Sabattus, 399; Lisbon of Lisbon Falls/Saint Dominic of Auburn, 357; Bucksport, 314; Madison/Carrabec of North Anson, 299; and Winthrop/Monmouth Academy/Hal-Dale of Farmingdale, 267.