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A realignment plan pending final approval by the Kentucky High School Athletic Association would change the local district playoff picture for high school football beginning in 2011.
Under the proposal Carroll County would continue to compete in Class 2-A District 5, but only one current district foe would remain after the realignment. Currently, the Panthers are aligned with Owen County, DeSales and Christian Academy of Louisville in the district.
Only Owen County would remain of the existing opponents. Three area 1-A schools would be bumped up to 2-A and added to the District 5 lineup, including Gallatin and Trimble counties and Walton-Verona. Gallatin and Trimble are currently designated as part of the Class 1-A District 4 which also includes Frankfort, Eminence and Bracken County.
“It works out better for us,” Carroll County Head Coach Mike Weedman said on Thursday. “It evens things out as it should have been all along.”
This fall, the KHSAA Board of Control Ad Hoc Committee on Football Alignment has been finalizing a draft alignment of schools, according to the KSHAA Web site. The proposed realignment of football districts are to be made final following a comment period by the schools, at the board’s Oct. 18, meeting in Lexington.
The alignment term will be for school years 2011-2012 through 2014-2015. Enrollment figures for 2009-2010 and 2008-2009 — average number of boys, grades 9-12 plus special education — were used to place schools in classes. There will be a review of alignments after the first two years with potential adjustments.
Weedman said that while Owen and Carroll have been in the same district for years, the Panthers have not been aligned in the same district with neighboring Gallatin and Trimble counties “in the 11 years that I’ve been here.”
A moratorium on athletic directors signing contracts for next season is in place until after the final alignment document is approved. Contracts signed prior to Oct. 18, 2010 are not to be considered valid.
Once final approval is in place, some schools may be inclined to drop previous district opponents from their regular season schedules and elect instead to add new district opponents to their new schedules. All of next year’s realigned district opponents are on the Panthers’ 2010 schedule.
Another benefit to the realignment, according to Weedman, is that none of the schools in the new district 5 will have to travel a great distance for a post-season game.
“I believe that was one of the priorities of making the realignment,” Weedman said.
The realignment is limited to school football programs and does not change the current playoff alignments for any other high school sport, according to the KHSAA Web site.