Both of those teams, as well as Talawanda had been members of the Fort Ancient Valley Conference (FAVC) prior to the formation of the SWOC as the FAVC collapsed with schools withdrawing and moving to other leagues.
Ross had been in the FAVC for more than three decades, while Edgewood had only been a part of that league since 2006.
Cole said he was not in the athletic director’s job at Talawanda when the SWOC was formed, but came in while Wilmington was still a member in their final year.
“Now, we are down to four. We’ve got to get other teams to join in with us,” he said. “We are hearing all over the state, people are moving, people are shifting. It started with the colleges and has worked down to high school.”
Schedules are set for the next two years and Cole said the biggest challenge will be filling out football schedules after the loss of Edgewood and Ross.
“The biggest scheduling work will be football. For the other sports, we can just add non-league games,” he said.
Edgewood is the reigning SWOC football champion, succeeding Ross which won the title in 2020. The Cougars won outright titles in 2016 and 2017 and shared the top spot with Harrison in 2018.
Edgewood recently won the boys’ basketball championship for the current school year and Ross won it a year ago. Edgewood won the girls’ basketball title a year ago.