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Prep notes: UHSAA to vote on realignment

Published August 28, 2014 11:55 am

Organization wants feedback on whether tournament results should figure into system.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Those who like or dislike the proposal to base part of high school football realignment criteria on past success will have one last chance to voice their opinion before the Utah High School Activities Association Board of Trustees votes on the proposal.

A realignment public hearing is scheduled Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. at the UHSAA offices at 199 E. 7200 South in Midvale. The Board of Trustees will then vote on the proposal at its meeting Thursday that begins at 9 a.m.

UHSAA assistant director Bart Thompson has been the point person on the realignment proposal, which would factor in state tournament success that could move "bubble" teams up or down a classification. The proposal was made by a few schools and districts who feel as though their socioeconomics put them at a disadvantage when playing football.

"We want to hear what's wrong with it or what's right about it," said Thompson, who emphasized that the UHSAA staff has no position on the proposal. "This is a new idea in this state. We want honest feedback from the schools. If everybody is in favor, great. If they are opposed, great. We want specific reasons."

The proposal is on at http://www.UHSAA.org. Comments can be made via email as well on that site.

After Thursday's meetings, the Utah State School Board will be doing an audit of studentbody sizes that should be finalized around Nov. 10. The Board of Trustees will realign regions around the end of November.

Whether they will use the success formula Thompson developed will be determined Thursday.

New schools

Six new schools have joined the UHSAA this year, meaning there are 142 member schools (103 of which play football). New schools include American Heritage in American Fork, American Preparatory in Draper and West Valley, Ashcreek Ranch Academy in Toquerville, Lake Powell in Kane County, Providence Hall in Riverton and Venture Academy in Weber County.

Thompson said those who are fielding sports teams will be independents this year with no chance for postseason competition. Lake Powell will be fielding track, cross country and golf teams this season.

Looking ahead

The second week of the high school football season features some great rivalry games that include Tooele at Grantsville, Bountiful at Viewmont, West Jordan at Riverton, Taylorsville at Murray, and Granger at Kearns on Friday. Herriman at Bingham on Thursday could be interesting as well. The featured game, though, sees 5A power Jordan going to East.

National watches

MaxPreps.com lists Jordan quarterback and Wisconsin commit Austin Kafentzis as a sleeper in its National Player of the Year watch.

And the site also listed Pine View's Kody Wilstead as one of 10 prep quarterbacks likely to lead the nation in passing this year.

Prep football on TV

KJZZ kicked off its televised coverage of prep football with games Thursday and Friday. The station has plans to do 27 more games, culminating with the 3AA, 4A and 5A state championship triple-header on Nov. 27 at Rice-Eccles Stadium.

For a complete schedule, go to http://www.KJZZ.com. The station will televise Friday's Jordan at East game.

National prep games?

The UHSAA board of trustees will hear information on a proposed four-team January national high school football tournament called the Paragon State Bowl Series when it meets Thursday.

While the Fremont girls' basketball team participated last year in the basketball championship series, it would likely be a rare year when Utah had a national top-four football team. For example, in the national preseason football rankings, Bingham is ranked 23rd by USA Today and 56th by MaxPreps.

State football rankings

In preseason football rankings released before the first week of play, MaxPreps ranked Bingham, Timpview, Brighton, East, Riverton, Jordan, American Fork, Herriman, Woods Cross and Pleasant Grove as its top 10 teams.