UIL Realignment’s bi-annual festivities provide plenty of fireworks that reverberate across the Lone Star State.
Despite all the guesswork that’s done by many (yours truly included), the UIL always manages to throw a few curveballs our way every time.
Let’s take a look at Class 5A and see who won the day and who came away from realignment shaking their head.
Carrollton-Farmers Branch ISD: Two years ago, the three CFB ISD schools were placed in a 5A-Division I alignment with the likes of Denton Ryan, Birdville and Colleyville Heritage and the results frankly weren’t pretty. This time things went much better for the district just north of Dallas as the two remaining Division I schools - Newman Smith and RL Turner - were aligned with Dallas ISD and Lancaster. Although Lancaster is going to be a runaway favorite to win this district, the remaining teams should all be quite competitive with each other and that could mean both long struggling programs could have a chance to gain some traction. Carrollton Creekview actually drops down from Division I to Division II and the Mustangs may have difficulty with former district foe Grapevine, but aside from that their foes in Fort Worth ISD will be teams that Creekview should be able to compete with and again have a strong chance at nabbing a playoff spot, which was unthinkable two seasons ago.
Weslaco East and McAllen ISD: The four drop downs from Class 6A have all seen their share of success in the state’s largest classification, most notably Weslaco East and McAllen Memorial. Now these four schools move down to 5A-Division I and into a Region IV race that really lacks a clear favorite with the departure of San Antonio Wagner to Class 6A. If there’s a chance for a regional champion from the Rio Grande Valley it’s likely coming from Region IV in 5A-Division I, and the first two teams I’d look at are Weslaco East and McAllen Memorial.
Texarkana Texas: Gerry Stanford’s squad not only drops down into 5A-Division II after a breakout season a year ago in 5A-Division I, but the Tigers get to rekindle several old rivalries in East Texas that has been lost the past two seasons. Texas High gets to match up with Mount Pleasant, which is a long-time rival, along with Marshall and Longview Pine Tree. An added bonus is the Tigers are in Region III, which looks to be a wide-open region, as graduation has depleted the ranks of many of the favorites in the Houston area.
Lubbock Cooper: Status quo equals a win for the Pirates in this alignment, with Aledo remaining in Region II, the Pirates will once again be considered the favorite come playoff time in a region that 3-5A Division I have dominated. District rival Wichita Falls Rider looks loaded on paper and could have something to say about it, but avoiding Aledo until the semifinals is a win for everyone involved.
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