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Football proposal get tweaked
Whenever changes are being made there is always alternative view points which usually bring up additional questions about the reasons behind the decision. The recent expansion of having four football classes is no exception.
The process by the Maine Principals Association has its fair share of skeptics. However, something needed to be done and the recent proposal has drawn increased favor. This is in sharp contrast to when the four classes was initially proposed in 2010. The football committee tabled the idea, in large part because there was a vast majority against it.
Instead, there was a variety of moves implemented in an effort to address the growth of the sport statewide and balance the competition. Currently, there is 76 football playing schools and the consensus was that the system would require some tweaking.
Last week, the committee made some moves with its proposal to expand from three to four classes. The statewide changes would begin in 2013. The revisions were necessary because three schools -- Mountain Valley, Wells and Biddeford -- each petitioned to move up a class. It created a domino effect because eight schools (teams) were effected.
The classifications are each based on student enrollment. Class A is 854-plus; Class B is 625-853; Class C is 460-624 and Class D 459 and under. There will still be East and West Divisions, but the main plan was aimed to have an equal amount of teams in each, creating a balanced schedule.
Mountain Valley and Wells both were moved from Western D to Western C, under the four class plan, beginning in 2013. Mountain Valley has been a Class B power, winning a dozen Campbell Conference regular-season crowns, seven regional crowns and state championships in 2004, '06, '08 and 2010. Last year, Wells beat the Falcons in the regional final en route to winning the state championship.
The moves is certainly warranted because the two foes would have dominated Class D. They will be joined by Cape Elizabeth, Gray-New Gloucester, Lake Region, Leavitt, Spruce Mountain, Poland and York. Dirigo will be in Class D with familiar teams Oak Hill, Winthrop, Boothbay, Freeport, Lisbon, Old Orchard Beach, Sacopee Valley, Traip, Telstar and Yarmouth.
The third team that petitioned up was Biddeford, who wanted to be in Class A. It sounds quite similar to what occurred in Rumford during the 1980s, when the student enrollment declined and it became very obvious that the program had trouble remaining competitive.
There was those that proposed dropping to Class B, but that plan was hammered down because a group of diehards opposed it.