Eugene McGee: Spirited youth can save offaly from oblivion
The shocking depths to which the Offaly senior football team has sunk in the past decade is a cause for major concern, even despair, to followers of the Faithful county, but it should also be a worry to the Gaelic football world at large.
Because over the past 50 years, since they won their first Leinster title in 1960, Offaly footballers have made major contributions to Gaelic football in Leinster and beyond. They have played in 15 Leinster finals in 50 years, winning 10 and competed in seven All-Irelands finals, drawing one and winning three. Offaly have also won minor and U-21 All-Irelands in the period. This is an average better than all but a handful of counties.
At the moment, Offaly football is at its lowest ebb in 50 years and the team seems likely to be relegated to Division 4. They are currently at the bottom of Division 3 with no points and a score difference of -38, the second worst in the NFL after Kilkenny.