01/29/16 – Board Approves Final Football Alignment Moves, Resolves Cross-Bracketing Review for 2016 through 2018

January 29, 2016 Football Blog Updates

At its regular meeting on January 28, the Board of Control completed a review and discussion on a variety of football related issues. These issues had been on the Board agenda for a period of time and input had been gathered from the Administrators, Athletic Directors and Football Coaches that are members of the Football Advisory Committee, in addition to nearly constant general membership feedback. Data gathered (including travel mileage) and presented to both the Advisory Committee and the Board of Control is available through the Board agenda system at https://portal.ksba.org/public/Agency.aspx?PublicAgencyID=4374&AgencyTypeID=1&BeginDate=1-1-2016&EndDate=1-31-2016

Per the Competition Rules, the school enrollments were to be reviewed following receipt of the 2015-16 enrollments, and the current four-year average boys enrollment at each school was to be compared with the four-year average boys enrollment that placed the teams in classes for 2015-2018. Any school whose ranked enrollment would place them in a different class AND the percentage of enrollment change was greater than 10% was to be moved. In addition, the Board was given information about the addition of two definite new schools for 2017, Floyd Central and the new school in Fayette County, that needed to be placed. Following discussion, the following moves were made in the classification system effective with the 2017 playing season:

  • Moore High School to Class 4A, District 3
  • South Warren High School to Class 5A, District 2
  • The new Fayette County High School in Class 6A, District 7
  • Floyd Central High School to Class 3A, District 6

The Board then considered its pending review of the bracketing and tournament structure for football playoffs. The Board acted in four different areas related to the playoffs in football:

  • The Board had considered through its review of the football championships, a change in bracketing that would have conducted the first two rounds of the playoffs intradistrict (playing within the district) and then cross-bracketing those district winners into region play in the third round and later. This came from concerns expressed by member schools about the cost of travel with cross-bracketing currently beginning in round 1. After receiving significant feedback from the membership, and considering many viable options, the Board voted to cross-bracket (play between, not within districts) for the playoffs in the first round for classes 2A though 6A through the 2018 season.
  • The Board continues to be concerned with prior feedback and at that time, a nearly even split from the membership in Class 1A concerning the fact that cross-bracketing beginning in round 1 causes more extreme travel concerns in 1A than any other class. The Board directed that feedback in the form of an administrative survey be gathered in Class 1A to determine the preference for cross-bracketing the first round (or playing within district) in class 1A due to those extreme travel concerns. Results of this survey are to be reported and considered not later than the May, 2016 Board meeting.
  • The Board then thoroughly reviewed the options for the specific districts to be cross-bracketed in Class 6A and 5A, as to whether those patterns should be in straight district order (1 vs. 2, 3 vs. 4, 5 vs. 6 and 7 vs. 8) or alternated. Membership feedback, both pro and con, to alternating those patterns had been received in both classes. Following the discussion, the Board voted that the district pairings in Class 6A and 5A be alternated, with the pairings developed to ensure that when the same teams meet as number 1 seed in consecutive years in rounds 3 or 4, the home/host team not be the same both years. It continues to be directed to staff in developing these rotations that travel be constrained where possible to ensure that the wishes of the schools to see “new” teams in postseason are balanced with the economic impact of traveling. A final list of the pairings for 2016, 2017 and 2018 will be finalized and reviewed by the Board prior to distribution. 
  • The Board then voted to pair District 1 with 2, 3 with 4, 5 with 6 and 7 with 8 for 2016 in Classes 2A, 3A and 4A. The Board directed staff to solicit feedback both from the Advisory Committee and potentially with a membership survey, and review the results later this spring to finalize decisions for 2017 and 2018.

With this action, it is highly advisable that schools restrain from signing game contracts until after the March 18 meeting of the Board of Control. While tentative schedules can be and should be developed, if there are concerns that future decisions about bracket formats in Classes 1A, 2A, 3A and 4A would impact scheduling, all schools would certainly be advised to continue waiting. 

– KHSAA –

The KHSAA staff routinely publishes blog posts to better communicate with its various constituencies and the public. The blogs for specific sports and sport-activities are on that sport or sport-activity main page, and there are general information blogs at http://khsaa.org/news-stats-pubs/sports-blogs/