High school sports enters new playing field

Kelly Reeves Athletic Complex in Round Rock, Texas, where football coaches from across the area will gather to schedule nondistrict games (Kate Weidaw/KXAN)

Some big changes could be announced for high school sports across the state on Monday.

The University Interscholastic League will release who each district will play against for the 2014 to 2016 season in football and basketball.

Local football coaches are expected to gather at Reeves Athletic Complex in Round Rock to negotiate their nondistrict games.

The reason this is a big deal is because in December the UIL added a conference, so now the classification goes from 1A to 6A.

What used to be called six-man football is now classified as 1A, and 6A is the new conference.

Because conference position is based on the enrollment at the school, schools like Rouse High School in Leander moved up from 4A to 6A because of its growing population. The same goes for Hays and Lehman high schools.

But most schools like Bowie are going from 5A to 6A and Reagan is going from 4A to 5A because of the reclassification not enrollment.

While not much is expected to change for the majority of the 1,396 schools that are a part of this realignment, some districts may find they are playing tougher teams or that they are now the “top dog” in their district.

And while the UIL is only announcing the lineup for football and basketball, other sports should see similar competition.

“The football and basketball districts are going to mirror all the other activities as well as you get down to the smaller conferences that may change a little bit and even though we are just releasing football and basketball that will apply to most other activities as well,” said Dr. Mark Cousins, UIL’s director of athletics.

Districts that are unhappy with their new placement, possibly due to increase in transportation costs, can appeal to UIL to have it changed.

Once those appeals are complete that’s when UIL plans to release who the other sports will be playing against.

Every two years the UIL looks at the conference each district is assigned, too.

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