What are YOUR questions about the new GHSA 6-classification plan?

The GHSA voted to approve the plan to expand from 5 to 6 classifications, which will go into effect in fall 2012.

Click here to read the STORY about vote.

Click here to look at how the state’s 433 member schools will be divided (Note: This is based on old numbers, not the new student enrollment figures that will come out in October 2012).

Now … what are YOUR questions about the GHSA’s 6 plan? Who is getting the best deal? The worst part of it? What is confusing? What makes sense? Please post them below.

64 comments Add your comment

glw

May 11th, 2011
4:02 pm

With the addition of a 6th classification, why wasnt anything done to solve the issue of the disparity in enrollment in the largest classifications…specifically with metro atlanta schools with 3,000 students, and some schools in 6A having 1800 students?

minor sport fan

May 11th, 2011
4:12 pm

Will the classifications for the minor sports be A-4A and 5A-6A together? There are schools that play in the A-4A now that are projected to be 5A and even 6A under the new breakout. (Lambert & Johns Creek)

gary

May 11th, 2011
4:39 pm

How does all this affect schools from south georgia? Beyond a SHADOW of a doubt Valdosta will request to play AAAAAA football, but they have only 1900 students. Their just aren’t that many schools in south georgia that play AAAAA ball now. Region 1AAAAA currently has only 5 schools as it is. Northside and Warner Robins both stepped down to AAAAA in 2011.

gary

May 11th, 2011
4:41 pm

correction, Northside and Warner Robins dropped down to AAAA in 2011.

NorcrossDude

May 11th, 2011
5:56 pm

What will happen to major rivalries like Tucker vs Marist?

D

May 11th, 2011
6:06 pm

Based on the enrollment estimates in the 4/8 plan. Valdosta has an estimate of 1409 and Warner Robbins is estimated to have 1344. Why consider Valdosta to be 5-A and not Warner Robbins. Northside W.R. only has 1421 only nine more than Valdosta. It makes since to me to have six teams in region 1. It seems odd that Valdosta is expected to have more students than the smallest school in the proposed 1-6A classification, but is not included in the proposed 1-6A list. Someone please help me understand this.

jb

May 11th, 2011
6:22 pm

Coffee HS with be going to Camden, Brunswick, Savannah etc (more travel) instead of Lowndes, Tifton, Colquitt, Valdosta are 1AAAAA..Coffee would have been better off to stay where they were are drop down to Ware Co region. Its BS. The north wins in this deal…all 16 from north voted for it, right?

jb

May 11th, 2011
6:27 pm

Rivalries…Coffee just lost all its..There is none with new teams.

Legend of Len Barker

May 11th, 2011
6:52 pm

Is there to be any adjustment for city schools with relaxed enrollment districts?

And will there be anything done to keep schools, such as those in Chatham, for playing against their best interests? They still believe they can compete in basketball, though they rarely make it deep into any state tournament. Football, boy howdy. Benedictine played up three classifications this season (and that’s with the multiplier as they’re boys only); other Chatham schools are playing up two.

I have no rooting interest in Chatham, but it’s not pleasant seeing not just Camden feast on them but their overall annual records in football.

Would the GHSA consider basketball playoffs the way they initially were when they expanded to 32 teams? As in, letting one school host the opening round for all games between the regions, then play multiple games in a neutral location in round two? I felt like I was getting my money’s worth seeing four games for $7, instead of a maximum of two (with the two being very, very rare).

Go Cats!

May 11th, 2011
6:58 pm

Jb, Coffee could request to play up also. While the plan was intended to end the disparity between schools and the cost of travel, it has done the exact opposite for some schools. Valdosta’s current region keeps teams within an 1.5 drive. In its new region, VHS would have to travel to Warner Robins twice, Albany, and Columbus. This basically doubles the amount of travel. I don’t think many South Georgia schools would complain about competing with Lowndes, Colquitt, and Camden. They need to re-establish the North-South plan. This would cut travel for everyone and essentially even the enrollment numbers.

rancher

May 11th, 2011
8:04 pm

I don’t think Coffee has an option. They are scheduled to play in 6a not 5. they were moved to fill out the region 3-AAA AAA. (D) Dont know where you got numbers but they are not correct. The 1400 for Valdosta must be 10-12. Check this site for enrollment.http://high-schools.com/report/ga/public-school-enrollment-rank-in-georgia.html.

ACC12-SEC12 Booster

May 11th, 2011
8:20 pm

It should be noted that for whatever reason, some of the numbers that these proposed regions are based off look to be at least a decade old or more.

Legend of Len Barker

May 11th, 2011
9:08 pm

If anyone is curious, here are the GHSA ADA numbers for 2010-11. Where the AJC borrowed their numbers from, I have no idea. I can’t find the article with their numbers again, but do know that the Legend’s alma mater was listed at ~650 when in actuality, they’re 840.5.

Numbers start on page 142.
http://www.ghsa.net/files/documents/Constitution/Constitution_2010-2011.pdf

D

May 11th, 2011
10:27 pm

Ranchers. I those enrollment numbers are list on ajc web site under the 4/8 plan.

carol

May 11th, 2011
10:30 pm

Maybe I missed something, but I thought adding a new class was supposed to level the playing field. However, our relatively small school is still up there in AAAAAA amongst the behemoth schools that beat everyone mainly because of the size of their enrollment. I don’t get it.

D

May 11th, 2011
10:50 pm

Rancher. Regardless the alignment does not make any since. Based on the site you recommend Houston County is larger than Warner Robins, Valdosta, and Northside. Warner Robins is second largest of the three followed by Valdosta. However, in their proposed alignment Warner Robins and Northside are proposed to be in 6-A and Valdosta and Houston in 5-A. Instead of having five teams in region 1 6A, why not include Houston and Valdosta to make it eight. In the proposed 1 5A plan, Valdosta will have to travel long distances to play regular season games (three hours to Columbus, two+ hours to Bainbridge, and nearly two hours to Lee County, etc.).

robert

May 11th, 2011
11:10 pm

What are the enrollment #’s for each specific class beginning with the new 6A and going on down GHSA. You voted to change so let us in on the secrect on the math please.

ACC12-SEC12 Booster

May 12th, 2011
2:46 am

robert, May 11th, 2011, 11:10 pm-
If I’m correct, the expansion to the six-class system doesn’t have enrollment cut-offs like the five-class system has, instead each of the six classifications will have a certain percentage of schools with Class A having the highest percentage of schools in it because of the number of small schools that size that are basketball-only members of the GHSA. Class AAAAAA will have the second-highest percentage of schools in it because of the high number of larger schools in Metro Atlanta and Classes AA through AAAAA are supposed to have an equal percentage of schools in each of them.

ACC12-SEC12 Booster

May 12th, 2011
3:08 am

I was incorrect on the percentage of schools in each class under the six-class system, but here is the EXACT breakdown on the percentage of schools in each of the six classes as posted by Michael Carvell in his blog on Tuesday, May 10 from the GHSA:

Class AAAAAA (15% of all schools)
Class AAAAA (15%)
Class AAAA (16%)
Class AAA (16%)
Class AA (16%)
Class A (22% because of so many non-football playing schools)

The real impetus to expand the GHSA from five to at least six classes came from next door neighbor Alabama, which has less than half the population of Georgia, but has been operating with the six-class system for many years now. I think that Florida operates under the six-class system, too if I’m correct. North Carolina, a state that is similar in size and population to Georgia with about 9.5 million people operates under the 4/8 system because of a social and geographical divide between Western North Carolina and Eastern North Carolina that is somewhat similar to the social, cultural and geographical divide in this state between largely rural South Georgia and urban/suburban Metro Atlanta-dominated North Georgia.

ACC12-SEC12 Booster

May 12th, 2011
4:23 am

It’s my understanding that South Georgia schools were interested in the 4/8 plan for economic reasons and to cut down on travel while North Georgia schools wanted to go with a more conservative approach and keep things as close as possible to the current five-class system by only expanding to six classes. It’s understandable that North Georgia schools wanted to keep things as close as possible to what they are under the five-class system because it looks like North Georgia is finally starting to dominate in the sport that counts the most around these parts due to extreme population growth, with North Georgia schools (specifically Metro Atlanta schools) winning state titles in football in four of the five classes. If Metro Atlanta and North Georgia see growth that resembles anything like the growth that has been seen in the last decades then it won’t be long until the GHSA is forced to adopt an eight-class or even ten class system to accommodate all of the new schools (something like close to SIXTY! new high schools have opened in North Georgia in the past 15 years or so), but North Georgia schools, and specifically, Metro Atlanta schools, are not ready to give up their newfound dominance of the five (and soon-to-be six) class system in football just yet. As we all know very well, South Georgia schools have dominated high school football by winning most of the state titles for much of the state’s history. Now that the tables have turned, largely with the help of overwhelming population growth in places like Gwinnett and North Fulton, North Georgia athletic interests are not about to change from a system that they have lusted, hungered and craved to dominate for so long, but make no mistake eight-class and possibly ten-class high school athletics is just around the corner, especially for a state that has grown to be as large as Georgia has in the last few decades, but only after North Georgia gets the opportunity to prove whether or not it can dominate in the only sport that really counts in these parts, football, in the same way that South Georgia dominated on the gridiron for most of the state’s prep football history.

rancher

May 12th, 2011
7:52 am

“D” sorry if I gave the impression I was defending what was done. I agree it makes no sense for south ga. My only point was the numbers being quoted “by 4/8″ were obviously incorrect. Just move the current 1-5A to 1-6A , add Camden and I am sure that group will do well in the playoffs against the metro Atlanta schools. I find it interesting to read comments like” north Georgia is finally starting to dominate in …football” after winning a state title. This is the first in at least 5 years , though they have about 90% of the teams…DOMINATE …really???

Eddie

May 12th, 2011
7:58 am

Is there going to be anything done around playoff seeding? As an example, in 6A, you have the northern regions filled with 8,9 or 10 teams and 4 make it. In the south, you have 5 team regions where 4 make it. Those numbers make it pretty clear that playoff bracketing is going to have some pretty bad southern teams make state while some pretty good northern teams don’t. Wouldn’t it make some sense to allocate state berths based on region size? If you have a 5 team region, you get 3 berths, 8 or 9 team region, you get 4 berths, and a 10 team region you get 5 berths.

Alternately, keep all regions at 4 teams, but then seed all teams from 1-32 regardless of location. Seems like either method would result in the best teams advancing as far as possible without creating inequitable early match-ups based on geography.

dagrapevine

May 12th, 2011
8:43 am

if this winds up one big train wreck we can thank/blame one fella.dave hunt.he’s worked tirelessly for years to get gwinnett county their on class so now he’s one step closer.

D

May 12th, 2011
9:22 am

Rancher didn’t mean to sound defensive. I was only explaining where I got the numbers from.

ACC12-SEC12 Booster

May 12th, 2011
9:39 am

Eddie, May 12th, 2011, 7:58 am-
“Wouldn’t it make some sense to allocate state berths based on region size? If you have a 5 team region, you get 3 berths, 8 or 9 team region, you get 4 berths, and a 10 team region you get 5 berths. Alternately, keep all regions at 4 teams, but then seed all teams from 1-32 regardless of location. Seems like either method would result in the best teams advancing as far as possible without creating inequitable early match-ups based on geography.”

Eddie, you hit the nail right on the head in describing exactly how our neighboring state to the north, North Carolina, which is somewhat similar in size, population and with a social, cultural and geographical divide between the eastern and western parts of the state that is similar to Georgia’s divide between the northern and southern parts of the state. North Carolina operates under the 4/8 system using conferences with geographical names with each conference awarded playoff berths according to size and all 32 playoff teams being seeded 1-32 as opposed to Georgia’s numbered geographically-based regions with each region getting four playoff berths no matter the size.

ACC12-SEC12 Booster

May 12th, 2011
9:59 am

rancher, May 12th, 2011, 7:52 am-

Make no mistake, everybody with half-a-brain and any remote working knowledge of high school football in Georgia knows that South Georgia has overwhelmingly dominated the sport at the championship level, there is no argument there. South Georgia has dominated the history of the sport, but there is no question that North Georgia had a dominant YEAR by winning NOT just one football state title, but football state titles in four out of five classes. Winning the state title in football in the four largest classifications unquestionably reflects a very good year for North Georgia high school football. North Georgia teams also pulled off some really impressive feats during the postseason on the way to winning four state titles, with teams like Hillgrove beating Camden at Camden, Collins Hill beating Lowndes at Lowndes and Grayson beating (and shutting out) Valdosta at Valdosta and a North Georgia team in Brookwood beating a South Georgia team in Colquitt County and that was all JUST in AAAAA alone. If all of those postseason feats didn’t signal an excellent, even exceptional YEAR for North Georgia high school football, I don’t know what does.

ACC12-SEC12 Booster

May 12th, 2011
11:00 am

In the weeks and days before the vote on the proposed 4/8 plan and expansion to six classifications, there was lots of interest in the 4/8 plan from South Georgia schools looking to save money on gas and travel expenses, especially in the postseason, but there also was lots of grumblings from North Georgia schools about possibly having to change to what they considered a “watered down” eight-class system in the playoffs after finally having an unquestionably dominant year in the state’s most dominant sport of football. I even heard of some North Georgia members comparing the situation to the one in the Charlie Brown cartoons where just as the Peanuts gang was finally starting to win the baseball game, the clouds moved in and it started to pour down rain bringing a halt to a game in which they had struggled for so long and were finally starting to have some success. By most accounts, North Georgia schools voted down the 4/8 plan because they wanted the chance to dominate the sport of football in the fewest number of classes possible in the same way that South Georgia has dominated the sport for most of the state’s prep sports history. Though, with the travel factors between North and South Georgia schools meaning bus trips of sometimes up to six hours or more for postseason games (Hillgrove had a bus trip that was over SIX HOURS! from Cobb County down to the Georgia Coast to face Camden County for a playoff game while Colquitt County had three bus trips north during the postseason of AT LEAST nearly four hours or more), a system like the 4/8 plan is best to correct the imbalance between the disparity of the largest and smallest schools within classifications which can be up to 2000 students in the largest class. The 4/8 plan would also help to minimize academic disruptions on gamedays during the season, especially during the playoffs, by minimizing travel times that can be up to six hours one way as we saw during the last postseason and can also help to minimize the travel and gas expenses that come with those long bus trips from one end of the state to the other. Something like a 4/8 or even a 5/10 plan may come to look more attractive in the long-term, especially if Metro Atlanta and North Georgia experience the type of explosive growth that they saw in the period between 1980-2008.

HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS FAN

May 12th, 2011
11:33 am

The 4/8 plan if you look at it is not going to do all the things it was said to do.

You break up each class into two regions by the same thing they use now, school size. One region is the larger schools and the other includes the smaller schools. The large school regions would play for one state championship in that class and the small school regions would play for the other so you have 8 state championships, instead of the current five in every sport. For those complaining about the GHSA’s money making…that means higher priced tickets in eight playoff scenarios instead of five. It still does not eliminate playoff travel because you have each of the classifications split by school size and still with North and South Georgia schools competing for the titles in each.

Some of the regions would have less than 5 teams meaning having to find games where ever they can. This would more than likely translate into more travel. Some regions with less than 4 teams would forfeit playoff spots to larger regions.

So, say, a team is in a region with six other teams. The top four go to the playoffs based on five games played in region. Then they have to schedule games with 5 other teams. But if the next closest area has 11 teams in it so they all have 10 ready-made games for the season. So you stretch further out to get games, meaning more travel. Or you play the low number region teams near you which might or might not work out depending on how the numbers work out and the region alignments.

This is what South Georgia teams face now, especially in the largest class. The 4/8 was not going to totally eliminate it.

Nukieie

May 12th, 2011
11:35 am

OK folks you have to remember that in Hight school grades 9-12 are included wiether or not the are located at the same school. If a school has a 9 grade acadamey that is still considered part of the high school even if it is located on another campus for instance at Colquitt County High School 1,706 and at CA Gray Junior High School has 1239, of those 584 are in the 9th grade therefore they are considered part of Colquitt County High School makeing it 2290 at Colquitt County High School, You can find these # and past # at:
http://app3.doe.k12.ga.us/ows-bin/owa/fte_pack_enrollgrade.entry_form

Give the Dog a BONE

May 12th, 2011
11:53 am

So we have 6 classes now. Some things change, others do not. I would like to see people play where they are suppose to play. If your AA play AA. NO playing up or down without giving up the right to be in playoffs in all sports. I know I will get hammered but….

Captain Caveman

May 12th, 2011
12:15 pm

The “4/8″ plan was voted down because it was poorly thought out, not because “North Georgia” wanted to assert its dominance. As HS Sports Fan pointed out, calling the proposal “4/8″ was a false claim as it was just an 8 classifiction plan. The additional classifications or “tiers” would have spread the regions out even further as there was no requirement that the “upper” tier teams had to schedule the “lower” tier teams.

Up in Smoke

May 12th, 2011
12:36 pm

Who thought is one up, Cheech & Chong!!!!

D

May 12th, 2011
12:46 pm

Basically what it all boil down to, there is no need for a realignment. No matter how you align it, you’re gonna get the same results. Some years someone from the North will it all, and some years a South team will win it all. No one has attempted to address my main question, how can you classify a team to be in 5-A when their enrollment is slightly larger than the team classified to be in 6-A (speaking of the proposed region 1 6A and 5A). Based on some of the #’s that I have seen, Houston County has a larger enrollment than W.R., Northside, and Tift; Valdosta has a higher enrollment than Northside. Why would you not add Houston County and Valdosta and keep Coffee to give that region eight teams.

From North Carolina

May 12th, 2011
12:55 pm

North Carolina only goes 4/8 in popular sports such as Football. The championship brackets at the end of the season are based on population size. Other big sports such as baseball, softball, volleyball are then split into regions East and West. Basketball follows the region set up but then East meets West for a championship. Finally, smaller Olympic sports only have one championship per classification.

minor sport fan

May 12th, 2011
1:01 pm

The GHSA just issued a statement on its web site to clarify things. The list of new Areas published by the AJC is utilizing two year old enrollment numbers. The reclassification will utilize the oficial enrollment numbers that will not come out until Oct 2011. All Areas will remain the same for the 2011/12 year and the reclassification will start in 2012/13.

D

May 12th, 2011
1:25 pm

Nuckieie. The site you recommend makes more since. It justifies Valdosta in 5A but not Houston, because currently Houston’s enrollment is larger than both Northside and W.R. Northside should also be included in 5A with 1752.

Jim

May 12th, 2011
4:18 pm

I’d like to see South Fulton’s Westlake and Hughes play the likes of North Fulton Alpharetta, Milton, Northview, Centennial & Roswell. Seems they are always keeping obvious rivals away from one another. How ’bout it Alpharetta want some? Doubt it.

Tee

May 12th, 2011
4:46 pm

Why is it base on school enrollment ? Even if a school have 2,200 student doesn’t mean all the boys wanna play football, looking at these days and time u can barely get 125 boys to play football .. This is soo stupid, not to mention the cost of gas at 4.00 another thing is the talent in South Fulton County has been split do to rezoning.

SportsFan31313

May 12th, 2011
8:50 pm

How will this affect Region 3-AAAAA? The Schools in this Region will have travel may miles away to play against True Classified team in their Classification. The teams that are in the Savannah Metro Area are really AAA or AAAA teams say it at best. How will GHSA Classify the Teams? Will they re-adjust the student enrollment? Does anyone know?

SportsFan31313

May 12th, 2011
8:52 pm

Sorry about the typos. I meant to say, The Schools in this Region will have travel many miles away to play against True Classified teams in their Classification.

ACC12-SEC12 Booster

May 12th, 2011
9:17 pm

@From North Carolina, May 12th, 2011, 12:55 pm-
When the vote for reclassification into either the 4/8 plan or six classes went up at the GHSA everybody who has even the most minimal of knowledge of high school sports in the state of Georgia knows that this vote was all about football and football alone. Issues like travel time and competitive count in other sports, but the only sport that was on everyone’s minds when the issue of reclassification comes up is football, first and foremost far and beyond any other sport. You know, I know and everybody on this board and in this state knows that it was South Georgia schools that were the most interested in the 4/8 plan and coming off of winning state titles in football in the four largest classes it was North Georgia schools knowing that they had to expand the number of classes in the GHSA, but wanting to stay as close to the status quo as possible in a system that they feel that they were finally starting to have widespread success in who blocked the 4/8 plan and finally endorsed the expansion to six classes that they had stubbornly and repeatedly blocked. Even though success in one year doesn’t make an era, because of the success of winning football titles in 4 of 5 classes in 2010, North Georgia feels that they have South Georgia on the ropes in football and wants to see if they can dominate South Georgia for an extended period of time in the same way that North Georgia has been dominated by the South for almost all of this state’s prep sports history.

ACC12-SEC12 Booster

May 12th, 2011
9:19 pm

One can even infer that the 4/8 plan was a well-calculated ruse to get certain stubborn powerful factions within the GHSA to finally accept reclassifications into six-classes, which was long past due.

cat doc

May 12th, 2011
9:40 pm

North GA. will never dominate football with Lowndes and Camden in the south.

ACC12-SEC12 Booster

May 12th, 2011
10:19 pm

No one can argue with South Georgia’s clear record of historical dominance of high school football and the overall success of programs like Lowndes, Camden and, especially, Valdosta, the winningest high school program in the history of the sport, but it has to be noted that in 2010, all three programs were beaten at home by North Georgia teams in the playoffs. Lowndes was upended at home by Collins Hill, Valdosta was shut-out at home by a Grayson team that was supposedly in rebuilding mode and two-time defending AAAAA state champion Camden was beaten at home by an upstart Hillgrove team on a six-hour-plus one-way bus ride from Cobb County of all places during a playoff which cuminated in a North Georgia team from Gwinnett County in Brookwood beating a South Georgia team in Colquitt County in a year in which North Georgia had overwhelming success by winning state titles in football in the four largest classes. Can’t blame North Georgia high school football for feeling good about themselves after that type of very successful year.

robert

May 12th, 2011
10:22 pm

I have heard that Jesse Crews of Charlton Co has entertained the idea of a lawsuit against the GHSA from schools who feel the new alignment will be to costly for them due to travel and the distance for their minor sports to travel during the week for games will take away to much school time.

ACC12-SEC12 Booster

May 12th, 2011
11:04 pm

Jim
May 12th, 2011
4:18 pm
“I’d like to see South Fulton’s Westlake and Hughes play the likes of North Fulton Alpharetta, Milton, Northview, Centennial & Roswell. Seems they are always keeping obvious rivals away from one another. How ’bout it Alpharetta want some? Doubt it.”

Jim, Westlake and Hughes are predominantly black schools that for social and cultural reasons, like marching band battles and showmanship, etc, feel more at home in a Region 2-AAAAA that features other predominantly black schools like Stephenson, ML King and Newton. Those schools can certainly schedule whomever they would like in a non-region schedule early in the football season, but there doesn’t necessarily seem to be much, if any, rivalry there between South Fulton schools like Westlake and Hughes and North Fulton schools.

ACC12-SEC12 Booster

May 12th, 2011
11:08 pm

robert, May 12th, 2011, 10:22 pm-

It shouldn’t be surprising if a group of smaller South Georgia schools got together and filed a lawsuit as they were the group that was the highest on the 4/8 plan for obvious economic reasons.

Black

May 13th, 2011
12:04 am

What site lists the teams in each region , if it’s been established already

ACC12-SEC12 Booster

May 13th, 2011
2:24 am

Black, May 13th, 2011, 12:04 am-

There’s a link at the top of this page to the projected regions in each of the six new classes, but it’s a list that is based on outdated enrollment numbers, some of which seem to be a decade old or so in some cases. The official projected list of numbers will not come out until at least October 2011 when the latest official updated enrollment numbers are released.

AstroFan

May 13th, 2011
5:35 am

ACC12-SEC12 Booster: I agree with the statement to Jim. Back in the late 90’s for some reason, GHSA felt the need to put Centennial, Chattahooche and Milton into Region 7 with Douglass, Mays, SWD, Stephenson…etc. Even though I was at Douglass, travel time was horrible leaving school and heading up 400 with the rush hour traffic. Even back then, it deem seem feasible to travel that far, it was more of a burden. There should be no reason, South Fulton and North Fulton school should play each other. That would make no sense what so ever.