VYPE Oklahoma Regions
The Discussion of Class 6A/7A for Football in Oklahoma: VYPE Team Weighs in
February 1, 2013By VYPE Oklahoma of VYPE MAGAZINE - Oklahoma
During the December OSSAA board meeting, a plan was proposed to the board that laid out a split of the 32 teams competing in Class 6A football. The board nearly voted to approve the plan. Even though it did not pass, the OSSAA did a great job of getting the discussion put on the table.
Since then, the coaches and athletic directors of Class 6A have met and have discussed other plans and have presented those to the OSSAA in the ever-growing argument of how to make the state’s largest class more competitive from top to bottom.
Bill Huddleston - Long-time radio analyst and VYPE Three Rivers Director
I, for one, have never bought the idea that the number of kids attending a school determined who will or won’t win a state title. And, on occasion, we’ve all witnessed situations where a team, for example, out of Class 4A will defeat a team from Class 6A. However, to compete in a season long schedule, numbers do make a difference if nothing further than the opportunities for talent pool.
Given that, changes are needed if for nothing more than to quiet the long running debate. I like one of the proposals where six teams from each of the four 8-team districts get into the playoffs to create a pool of teams for two divisions of Class 6A playoffs. The district champion would automatically qualify for group A and then the next largest ADM qualifying school goes into group A. These two qualifying teams from each district would form an 8-team format. Round one would be a cross-bracketing matching the district champion from each district against the second qualifying school from the opposite side of the state. District 1 champion would play second qualifying team from District 4 while District 1 second qualifying school would play the District 4 champion. The same format would be used for Districts 2 and 3 to determine a champion.
The remaining four teams from each of the original districts would then form a group B 16 team playoff format that would be played out similar to the current format based upon the remaining order of finish.
Rod Coulter - VYPE's Husker Rod Looks from a different angle
I may not be as ingrained as some of my colleagues in the topic of high school football and the classification battles going on but that doesn’t keep me from throwing in my own two cents. If any of the other top eight to ten schools in enrollment had won state championships no one would be upset and we wouldn’t be having this conversation.
I attended two different high schools and have had two children attend two different high schools. Number of state championships won by any of us while in school-none. Has it had a major impact on our lives-no.
My son currently goes to Broken Arrow, the largest school in the state and his experience has been great. He moved from a much smaller school and I was concerned there would be some issues with the size but it has been great in all aspects, socially, educationally and in athletics, so suggesting that the school should split would be opposed by me and probably a good share of the general public in Broken Arrow. A state championship in football would be great, but there are bigger concerns than that and they are all being fulfilled very well, and in my opinion, better than if they split into two schools to even out attendance.
Bottom line, I don’t have an answer, but the debate is fun. If I had the answer, the NCAA/BCS would probably call me, but I don’t think I will hear that phone anytime soon. So my final answer is, leave it the way it is and play on.
Austin Chadwick - VYPE Publisher
Let’s be honest. There is no solution where everyone will be happy. I wrote a column about the fact that the majority of schools in Class 6A can compete with Jenks and Union if the schools adopt the mindset needed and put the time, effort, and resources in the football program for an extended period of time. Just like Jenks and Union have done. Outside of that, there is a massive discrepancy between the largest schools in 6A and the smallest. I support the coaches and ADs for coming up with a plan that is similar to how Texas breaks up 5A for football. Only difference? Texas has 240+ teams in 5A, Oklahoma? 32 in 6A. I also commend the OSSAA for taking the initiative and putting a plan out there that gets the ball rolling. The system is working exactly how it is supposed to.