(12-5-19) 2019 is the third season in the competitive balance era in the OHSAA. Looking back it has changed the landscape of the state football championships. Depending who you talk with it is working the way it was planned to do.

This year just two private schools will be playing for a state title, both are members of the Greater Catholic League, Cincinnati LaSalle (D II) and Cincinnati Elder (DI).

Division I State Championship: No 9 Cincinnati Elder (12-2) vs. No. 3 Pickerington Central (13-1) is Friday, Dec. 6, 8:00 PM

Division II State Championship: No. 1 Massillon Washington (14-0) vs. No. 6 Cincinnati La Salle (12-2) is Thursday, Dec. 5, 7:00 PM

The last season (2016) without the CB Plan produced five private schools champions out of the eight divisions. In 2017 and 2018 there is a combined total of just three private school champions.

Last Seven Years Of Private School State Champions

I – Lakewood St. Edward
II – Akron Archbishop Hoban

II – Akron Bishop Hoban

I – Cincinnati St. Xavier
III – Akron Bishop Hoban
IV – Columbus Bishop Hartley
V – Canton Central Catholic
VII – Warren John F. Kennedy

I – Lakewood St. Edward
II – Cincinnati LaSalle
III – Akron Bishop Hoban
IV – Columbus Bishop Hartley

I – Lakewood St. Edward
II – Cincinnati LaSalle
III – Toledo Central Catholic
IV – Cleveland Benedictine

I – Cincinnati Moeller
III – Akron St. Mary-St. Mary

I – Cincinnati Moeller
II – Toledo Central Catholic
III – Akron St. Mary-St. Mary

One of the effects of the CB Plan was to the small school powerhouse conference, the Midwest Athletic Conference. The three previous years to the CB Plan the MAC had three members play in a championship game, last year just one competed in a title game. This season that number jumps up to two, thanks to MAC member Anna being moved down from D V to D VI along with other MAC members…they are now bunched in the same Region (D VI Region 23).

MAC Teams Who Participated In Past Championship Games

  • 2019 – Marion Local, Anna
  • 2018 – Marion Local
  • 2017 – Marion Local, Minster
  • 2016 – Minster, Marion Local, Coldwater
  • 2015 – Ft. Recovery, Marion Local, Coldwater
  • 2014 – Marion Local, Minster, Coldwater

Before the CB Plan

2008 – Last time the MAC had just one school in Championship games
2002 – Last time the MAC had no schools in Championship games

The X Factor

In the future private schools might have less teams playing 11-man football. This season several private schools decided to play the 8-man game (Sandusky St. Mary Central Catholic, Ashtabula St. John, Zanesville Bishop Rosecrans and Toledo Christian), plus public schools like Holgate, Stryker and Danbury are playing a regular 8-man schedule.

If those changes continue you could see additional schools moving to another division in future realignments. Something that will need to be addressed with in the future.

From a story today in the NY Times Football Is Dying in Ohio. A Coach in This County Made It Thrive.

Nationally, high school participation in 11-man football has fallen by more than 10 percent since 2009. In Ohio, it has plummeted by 27 percent.