Midwestern Athletic League football powers Coldwater and Fort Recovery also were bumped. Coldwater, a multiple state D-V champ, was overtaken and dropped to D-VI, where Marion Local, another MAC state power, remains. Also Fort Recovery, just two seasons removed from a D-VII state title, moves up to D-VI.
Changes were as abundant in soccer and volleyball, because of the fewer divisions in those sports. Among the changes was the Carroll boys, a D-II state power, to D-I. Carroll won four D-II state titles from 2008-12.
Previously, divisions were determined and revised every two years based only on student enrollment grades 9-11. That process remains in place with enrollment counting as of Oct. 31, 2016 (and documented by the Ohio Department of Education and its Education Management Information System). This time the new Competitive Balance formula also was factored.
Also new, annual roster counts could affect sports that are impacted by Competitive Balance. Possible division changes will be announced each spring for those sports.
The formula’s multiplying factor varies depending on the sport. A student’s numerical value increases if that student does not reside in a designated school district or did not begin their ninth-grade year in the designated school district. Those combined roster numerical totals determine divisional status.
Competitive Balance was a hot-button topic and essentially pitted private schools against public schools. A disproportionate amount of state championships won by private schools compared to public schools was its basis.
Previous versions of Competitive Balance were not approved by OHSAA member principals until spring 2014. There was a one-year delay in implementing the process to coincide with the normal two-year divisional adjustment and to complete software.
Ross championed Competitive Balance. Dr. Ross immediately took part in a statewide conference call with media following the announcement.
Divisional breakdowns for winter sports will be announced in June and divisional assignments for next spring’s sports will be released in August.
For the new divisions of the 2017 and ‘18 seasons see: