IHSAA Releases 2012 Cross Country Re-Alignment Plan
Cross Country Realignment released by IHSAA.
By Justin Floyd
June 26th, 2012
The topic of realignment has been in the back of everyone’s mind since it was announced that the IATCCC would propose a plan to the IHSAA in order to better align the Sectional, Regional, and Semi State meets during the tournament series. The first thing that every coach, athlete, parent, etc is going to do is see where their teams are going to be at. Did anything change? Are you in a new sectional that will take you towards an entirely different semi state? These questions can all be answered here: http://www.ihsaa.org/Portals/0/ihsaa/documents/about%20ihsaa/minutes/2011-12/062112.pdf
There are changes that will be very noticeable and notable to the common and avid fans of Indiana running. Here are some of those highlights:
New Prairie Semi State:
– There were not many notable changes, especially to the most competitive sectional in Chesterton where it seems 4 teams will continue their stranglehold on the majority of the qualifying positions (Valpo, Chesterton, Portage, Laporte)
– Most notable omission: South Bend schools continue their long trek away from New Prairie.
– Warsaw leaves the New Haven SS and enters the Culver Sectional. Adds great team strength up front in the team race.
– Oak Hill ends their short term stint at NP
– Hebron enters the Crown Point Sectional
New Haven Semi State:
– South Bend, Penn, Mishawaka will drive a great distance to New Haven.
– Northfield appear to be new additions to this Semi State.
– FW Northrop Sectional adds Homestead, Garrett, and Whitko
Carmel Semi State:
– Zionsville will leave the Noblesville sectional for Ben Davis.
– Noblesville sectional is still a buzz saw (Carmel, Fishers, HSE, Noblesville, Westfield) but the notables should advance to Brebeuf the next week.
– Brebeuf Regional will still potentially have these teams competing for 5 spots: Carmel, Fishers, HSE, Noblesville, Westfield, Lawrence Central, Lawrence North, Cathedral, Brebeuf, and North Central. Ouch.
– Perry Meridian will find a new Sectional and Regional (Greensburg)
Brown County Semi State:
– Columbus North is back in their rightful place.
– Bloomington North and South find themselves a new home at BNL sectional
– Jeffersonville moves from Southwestern to Crawford County (not sure why they weren’t there before)
From the outset of the process, we knew that they were not going to significantly shift the structure of the tournament. I had words for Indiana Runner viewers and that was to be patient and know that even small progress is progress. This change, although minor in many areas and not nearly significant in many areas, is still change.
I still take issue with the geographical alignment that has taken shape here though. South Bend is a mere 16 miles from New Carlisle, IN (aka New Prairie H.S) yet they will continue to travel over 2 hours to New Haven. Brebeuf still draws their sectional from a very awkward geographical location. However, Zionsville has left the Brebeuf regional and will take an admittedly easier route through Ben Davis. There were several shifts made in the FW area sectionals that do not give me one emotion or another but they seem to be geographically legitimate.
It is about time that the IHSAA realize that Columbus North can probably spit to Brown County and they now have their rightful home back and don’t have to travel to Carmel for Semi State.
As I sit here at work trying to really grasp all the changes that were made, it is hard to really imagine if these changes will make a significant impact to who actually makes the State meet this year. We don’t really know until it happens. We can speak in hypothetical’s and who is a “winner or loser” because of these changes but in reality I caution readers, fans and athletes to practice patience and hope that this is a step in the right direction for the sport of Cross Country.
Please stay tuned for further analysis and reaction on the tournament realignment.