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BALL FIVE: Teams move all over classes in two-year reclassification

The South Dakota High School Activities Association creates a new two-year football schedule every, duh, two years. With that comes reclassification of teams. Sometimes there is a lot of population shift. With this being the second time schools’ male populations are used, there was a lot change.
The changes in Class 11B have a lot of effect on the Mobridge-Pollock schedule. The Tigers play three teams that are new from the last two years. Added to the schedule are Lead-Deadwood, Miller/Highmore-Harrold and Webster Area. Gone are Cheyenne-Eagle Butte, Sioux Falls Christian and Stanley County.
Miller/Highmore-Harrold and Webster Area are new to 11B, having come up from 9AA. Also new to 11B after playing nine-man last year is Garretson. Also gone from 11B is defending state champion Sioux Falls Christian, who went up to 11A. Canton and Custer went from 11B to 11A, while Hot Springs and St. Thomas More came down from 11A to 11B.
In nine-man there may be more that has changed than what has remained the same.
Of the schools we care about around here only Timber Lake in 9A has remained the same. Herreid/Selby Area is down to 9B from 9A, North Border is down to 9A from 9AA and Lemmon/McIntosh is up to 9AA from 9A. The Braves of Cheyenne-Eagle Butte have left to compete in the newly-formed All Nations Football Conference.
There were 26 teams in Class 9AA last year. There are only 22 left with just 15 of the same teams as last season. Class 9A has 23 teams just like last year but there are just 13 holdovers. Class 9B lost a team from 25 to 24 and has 16 returning teams.
Want me to break it down for you? No? Good, because it would be a lot of confusion by the time I finish.
At least most of the reigning champions are still in the same class. While 11B champion Sioux Falls Christian is gone to 11A, Bon Homme in 9AA, Canistota/Freeman in 9A and Colome in 9B are all fighting to get to Brookings and try to become the first-ever state champions to defend their titles on an outdoor field.
I always find it odd that South Dakota has three classes of nine-man football because it has nothing to do with the schedules. Teams play basically the same schedule year after year no matter if they stay in the same class or move up or down to a different one.
Over the years the SDHSAA has taken away school’s chances to win district and region titles in a lot of sports, yet football keeps six divisions. In 11-man it makes sense because of such dramatic population differences, but not so much in nine-man. If you remember last spring, there was a lot of talk about six-man football for the smaller schools. It sounded like it was going to happen but very few of the schools that talked about their aspiration to play six-man had the desire to get in the trenches and make it possible. Maybe it should happen. Then the remaining nine-man teams can become one or two classes and they can have schedules that have a correlation to the classes the teams are in.
No matter what, the sound of football, from 11AAA to 9B, will be in the air quite soon.Teams move all over classes in two-year reclassification