In the early days when I was coaching, it was up to the coach to find transportation to away contests unless it was basketball or football. This meant that kids usually were asked to drive. No one seemed to be too concerned about liability, but as I think back now, what a risk we were taking. In some cases you had kids driving who only had a license for a few months. Fortunately, in the late 70’s, schools started buying vans and the coach could haul as many as 15 kids in these vans. As I look back, these vans were really not much safer than some of the cars we had kids driving. They got very top heavy when loaded to the maximum with student athletes.
Before I finished coaching, the small buses became the mode of transportation for those sports that had smaller numbers of athletes. You did not need a special bus license to drive these. A regular car license sufficed. These buses were a very stable way to transport kids. As you know, they are still in use today and most schools have a full fleet of them for getting their athletes to away contests. Big buses are still available, but in many schools, you must wait until they run their regular routes before they are available. This means that certain athletic contests can’t begin until 5:30 or later. Cars were more convenient, but buses are sure safer.