OHSAA football divisions, regions announced

By Paul Boggs - [email protected]

SCIOTO COUNTY — These annual alterations this time weren’t exactly sweeping, or maybe not even THAT interesting.

Yet, it answers Phil Castellini’s burning question.

“Where you gonna go?”

With Monday’s official Ohio High School Athletic Association announcement of the football regional assignments for the 2022 season, the wondering is over as far as Scioto County clubs are concerned.

Every year, or so it seems, Scioto County’s nine teams — along with the three from Pike County — either are grouped in a region with teams from the East and/or Central Districts, or are shipped out westward with those from say Southwest District squads.

Last season, it was more westward leaning with the smaller-school squads of Notre Dame, East and Green in Division VII Region 28 —but this year, that trio is linked together to play in Region 27.

In addition, another smaller Scioto County club compared to the five from Division V —Valley in Division VI —is heading westward this fall, for Region 24 competition and the Springfield, Dayton and Cincinnati-centric schools.

That’s the Miami Valley to you and me, as Region 24 also stretches north and westward —to now even include two 2021 state champions, Versailles in Division V and Marion Local in Division VII.

The Indians had been competing in Region 23, playing at Central Ohio club West Jefferson for their playoff game a year ago.

Those were the only notable changes for Scioto County schools, as Notre Dame won’t see Troy Christian — or East at Riverside for regional games at least.

Marion Local landed in as tied for the smallest Division VI school —while Oak Hill, the Indians’ Southern Ohio Conference Division II foe, drops down from Division V —and is one of the two-largest Division VI programs.

The Indians’ enrollment for football is 127, while Notre Dame’s is 75, Green’s 68 and East’s 27.

All three of that latter belong to the SOC I —along with division champion Symmes Valley and Eastern, which did in fact switch divisions and subsequently changed regions.

Symmes Valley, with an enrollment of 99, dropped down to Division VII and Region 27—while Eastern, at an enrollment of 113 and tied with Marion Local, climbed back to Division VI and in Region 24.

Two years ago, Notre Dame, East and Green —and Eastern —competed in Division VII and Region 27, joining other Southeast District teams along with those from the Central and East districts.

The largest of the six SOC I programs — Northwest —was the smallest of five for enrollment numbers of the county’s Division V Region 19 teams.

The Mohawks have an enrollment of 164, followed by West at 168, Minford at 176, Portsmouth at 182, and defending SOC II champion and Region 19 runner-up Wheelersburg at 196.

Joining the Region 19 ranks and moving up a division from VI to V is Fairland —with an enrollment at 191 and whose new EMIS number, along with those of Symmes Valley and Eastern, knocked them down or raised them up a division.

The Education Management Information System (EMIS) is a statewide data collection system for Ohio’s primary and secondary education, including demographic information, attendance, course information, financial data, and test results.

For the Dragons, it’s back to Division V — after recently being as high as a Division IV football school.

Speaking of Division IV, the talented and highly-touted Ironton Fighting Tigers — the two-time recent Division V state runner-up in 2019 and 2020 —ALMOST found themselves at that division’s low end.

Instead, with an enrollment of 201, Ironton is THE largest Division V program — thanks to a 2021 competitive balance number that is indeed 24.

Seventy schools moved up a division due to their EMIS numbers, while 55 moved down.

The number of schools moving up or down a division due to competitive balance basically was the same —24 total moving down, and 25 going up.

The OHSAA uses enrollment data provided by the Ohio Department of Education to determine each school’s base enrollment numbers for girls and boys sports, which will be used for the 2022-23 and 2023-24 school years.

Divisional breakdowns for the sports that utilize competitive balance data — which include soccer, volleyball and football for the fall — are reconfigured every year, while non-competitive balance sports are reconfigured every two years using only base enrollment numbers.

The 2022 football regions are posted at https://www.ohsaa.org/Sports-Tournaments/Football/Football-2022.

These are not the final lists of schools that will be eligible to participate in the 2022 playoffs, as schools have until Oct. 1 to make changes to their tournament participation.

In addition, multi-high school districts that restructure their high schools are required to have their enrollment reclassified as of Sept. 10, which may change their assigned tournament division.

The 10-week regular season begins the week of Aug. 15, with the top 16 schools in each region qualifying for the playoffs that begin the final weekend in October.

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Information from the Ohio High School Athletic Association was used in this story.


By Paul Boggs

[email protected]

Reach Paul Boggs at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1926, by email at [email protected], or on Twitter @paulboggssports © 2022 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved

Reach Paul Boggs at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1926, by email at [email protected], or on Twitter @paulboggssports © 2022 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved