The University Interscholastic League announced its preliminary cutoff numbers Wednesday for its biennial realignment to be released in February.
All Johnson County football teams will remain in their same classifications and divisions. Similar to how the UIL did with Class 4A in the most recent realignment, it will also split Class 5A into two divisions starting with the 2018-19 school year.
Early speculation hinted that District 9-5A might be split in half with several smaller schools, such as Joshua and Everman, going to Division II with the bigger schools, Cleburne, Granbury and Crowley, moving to Division I.
But the numbers the UIL announced on Wednesday revealed that won’t be the case — Class 5A Division I’s range is 1,840 to 2,189 while Class 5A Division II is 1,150 to 1,839.
Instead, District 9-5A will only lose two teams in the split — Granbury (2,004) and Crowley (2,153) will move up to Class 5A Division I. Meanwhile, Burleson (1,667), Burleson Centennial (1,780), Cleburne (1,826), Everman (1,583), Joshua (1,537) and Arlington Seguin (1,601.5) will be Division II.
“I initially thought we’d be Division I a while back but then later on with all the opt-ups it seemed like we would end up as a smaller school,” Cleburne Coach Casey Walraven said. “Normally you always want to be the biggest enrollment of wherever you’re at and we’re at the top edge of that. Hopefully it helps us in realignment and we get some people we can continue to compete with.”
Walraven said he’s glad the split likely won’t separate longstanding rivalries between schools like Joshua and Burleson.
“Having these schools that’s played for a long time and are close to each other, I think it’s good to continue to play those teams and have them in the same district,” Walraven said. “I anticipate it will be more of the same. It’s been a competitive district.”
Other notable cutoffs are: Class 4A Division I, 790 to 1,149; Class 4A Division II, 505 to 789; Class 3A Division I, 335 to 504; Class 3A Division II, 225 to 334; and Class 2A Division I, 161.5 to 224.
Alvarado will remain in Class 4A Division I; Godley will stay in Class 4A Division II; Grandview will continue as a Class 3A Division I school; and Rio Vista just barely missed the drop down to Class 2A Division I, but the Eagles will remain Class 3A Division II.
Allen submitted an enrollment number of 6,664, the largest in the state of Texas and 1,010 more than the second biggest school in the state, Plano West.
Dawson submitted an enrollment number of 19, the smallest in the state.