Realignment is where the University Interscholastic League, the governing body for Texas high schools, divides schools into divisions based on the enrollment of each school.
The excitement comes on Feb. 1 on even-numbered years. People across the state gather around their computers or at region service centers to see where the UIL has placed their teams. Lampasas was placed in Class 4A in 2008 due to their enrollment of 1,050. The cutoff between Class 3A and Class 4A for 2008 was 979.
The enrollment that each school submits to the UIL is taken on the second week in October. Our enrollment on that date for 2010 was 987, which is a significant drop from two years ago.
As you probably know, rural schools have been declining, but urban and suburban schools have been gaining in enrollment, largely due to the economy of Texas. Historically, the numbers for the top of each class have jumped 15 to 30 each year of realignment, but you never can tell what the UIL will do.
If history means anything, Lampasas could possibly drop from Class 4A to Class 3A.
What does this mean for Lampasas? If this happens, we will be competing against schools of equal size in our district.
When playing against schools of equal size, you will have opportunities to compete on more of a level playing field. One example this past year was Lake Travis, who had 270 kids playing football and we had 120.
Some people might not think the enrollment of Lake Travis (1,978) compared to Lampasas (987) is much of a difference, but it is. With Lake Travis having nearly 1,000 more students, and assuming half of them are boys and 30 percent of those boys play football, you can have 145 more boys out for football.
This is the case for all sports when you are in a district with larger schools.
The bottom line is you never know where the UIL will place the top number between Class 3A and Class 4A. So wherever we are placed, we will play with pride and compete to the best of our ability.
It still does not hurt to pray for a number of maybe 990 for being the top of Class 3A. Let us get ready for Feb. 1 and see where the Badgers will be.
Joey McQueen is the Lampasas High School athletic dirctor and the Badgers’ head football coach.