The Kentucky High School Football Playoff format is being debated again.
Opponents of the current system successfully lobbied the Kentucky High School Athletic Association’s Board of Control to immediately reconsider changing the format for the 2022 season when it met Wednesday morning at KHSAA headquarters.
Since 2019, the state’s six soccer classes have competed in an “intra-district” playoff that pitted district foes in the first two weeks of the playoffs for the right to advance, a departure from tradition. , which previously saw teams face off against enemies from neighboring or “sister” districts at these stages. This change in format was created within the Board of Directors and is not the result of a member survey.
Last May, the board agreed to revert to the old “sister district” format in 2023 when KHSAA delivers its next football class realignment. But opponents of the current system have criticized the move as going against the wishes of most football schools in the state.
So on Wednesday, the board asked KHSAA staff to re-survey its members about the format to assess whether it should immediately implement the change. The results of this survey will be announced and reviewed at the February Board meeting.
This new survey comes less than a year after another KHSAA survey showed that 109 schools were in favor of returning to the “sister district” format, 58 schools wanted to keep intra-district play and 58 schools did not. answered. As a percentage of all, 48% of football schools wanted a change. As a percentage of those who responded, 65% of schools wanted a change.
The Kentucky Football Coaches Association unsuccessfully fought the change when it was implemented in 2019 and made a more concerted effort to derail it last year. KFCA’s own poll of its members last February showed that 148 of its 193 responding members were in favor of a change.
“We would like to see him back immediately. It’s going to come back in 2023,” said KFCA chairman John Hines, Pulaski County head coach. “The overwhelming majority of coaches in the state want to do this. That’s why we brought it up. So our goal is just to go ahead and get going right now. To be honest with you, we thought there was enough support on the board to do it and we thought it would pass on its own… It could very well be voted on in February.
No shot clock yet for basketball
The board considered the results of a survey of its members on whether to adopt a shot clock in men’s and women’s basketball and decided against it for the 2022-23 season.
Last May, 75% of its member schools voted on the issue of the shot clock for boys’ and girls’ basketball, with the majority of those who responded voting against. In men’s basketball, the answers were 115 against, 97 for. In women’s basketball, the answers were 117 against, 88 for.
Last summer, the National Federation of State High School Associations lifted its ban on shot clocks and allowed states to make their own decisions about it. KHSAA Commissioner Julian Tackett said the board may consider adopting the shot clock in future years as it is tested in more states.
Golf to add semi-state tour
The board agreed to add a semi-state tournament round to its boys’ and girls’ golf seasons and to start each season a week earlier to accommodate it.
Details on which semi-state meets and who (number of teams/number of individual qualifiers) will advance to the non-state semi-state championship will be determined at a later meeting.
The 12 golf regions would be divided into three semi-state competitions based on geography. For example, regions 1-4 would compete in a half state, etc. The top two teams and the top 10 individuals outside of those teams in each region would advance to the half-states.
The move comes after a controversial decision in 2019 to narrow the state championship field by eliminating area runners-up from state team competition, due to time issues. This decision was criticized by members and leaders of the Kentucky Golf Coaches Association.