High School: 2012 UIL realignment

Breaking down realignment in North Texas

February, 3, 2012

Travis L. Brown and Randy Jennings break down what transpired at the North Texas realignment meetings.

Deion Sanders' charter school to play in 3A

February, 2, 2012
NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, Texas -- Get ready UIL, Prime Time is on his way.

Hidden in the shadow of the shuffling of 4A and 5A schools in the 2012 UIL realignment was the entrance of former Dallas Cowboy Deion Sanders' charter school, Prime Prep Academy, into Class 3A of the UIL.

Prime Prep Academy opens its doors this fall and will compete in multiple sports, including football, in District 11-3A.

“This is new for us," Prime Prep advisory board member Reginald Calhoun said, "so we’re building some relationships and trying to get our feet wet.”

Calhoun represented the school at Thursday’s meetings while the school’s founders continue to piece together a permanent athletic department, which includes hiring coaches.

Prior to the realignment meeting, members of the Prime Prep Academy advisory board met with UIL officials to map out the rules of eligibility with the charter school and confirm the school as a member of the organization.

Calhoun said the school’s new district mates, which includes Dallas Wilmer-Hutchins, Dallas Madison and Dallas Roosevelt, were “cautiously excited” about the addition of the charter school to district play in their preliminary exchanges.

“It’s tough right now with them adding Prime Prep Academy because we don’t know what their number will look like and we don’t have any history with them, but we’ll be fine,” Roosevelt interim head coach John Simon said. “We’re looking forward to the challenge.”

Simon said it was a “shocker” to see that Prime Prep Academy would jump right into a 3A schedule in its first year of existence, diverting from the norm of working up from 1A or 2A in the first few years. Simon said he believes Prime Prep Academy will have 2A numbers, but the school opted to play up in Class 3A.

Calhoun said Sanders will be directly and actively involved in the athletic programs of Prime Prep Academy. Sanders has been involved with his youth sports programs throughout the past several years.

Open enrollment for the academy begins March 1 and will be on a first come, first serve process through May 4. The school’s web site encourages parents to enroll early, as they believe the spots will fill up quickly. There is no tuition to attend the school.

Calhoun fielded interest from 3A Pittsburg, TAPPS Division I Plano Prestonwood Chrstian and several Mansfield ISD schools for non-district matchups in football.

Sanders and the academy board was granted its charter from the Texas State Board of Education on September 16 of last year to begin teaching high schoolers in Oak Cliff at the former site of Lobias Murray Christian Academy.

Sanders' vision for the school at the time was to create a union between the best academic teaching and the best athletic training the Metroplex has to offer.

"We plan on marrying the best of teachers academically, some of the best students academically, some of the best athletes together -- the best attitudes, the best passion and desire all intertwined to educate these guys to raise company CEOs, and not employees," Sanders said.

Thursday, excitement was flowing from Calhoun regarding the athletic steps the academy took, but the academics were still of highest priority to the board member.

“We’re doing something totally different. Not about the athletics but about the academics," Calhoun said. "When you begin to impact children’s educational opportunities, you’ve impacted that entire generation. You’ve changed lives by impacting them with education. It’s much more than athletics, even though it’s a small component of it -- it’s truly about education.”

Realignment notes: Playoff rivalries on hold

February, 2, 2012

NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, Texas -- Notes from 2012 reclassification and realignment day.

*Say goodbye to the chance of Euless Trinity-Allen and DeSoto-Dallas Skyline second-round playoff meetings that have become a fixture in recent seasons. Allen’s move to Region II and DeSoto’s move to Region I mean a playoff renewal couldn’t happen until the fifth round next year.

*The District 7-5A playoff teams could be looking at a bi-district trip to Central Texas. It will be facing teams from 8-5A made up of four Killeen schools, Belton, Copperas Cove, Temple and Waco Midway.

*Plano East coach Johnny Ringo thought he had taken every precaution in setting up his nondistrict schedule prior to Thursday’s realignment. But there he was, struggling to find a game after landing in a six-team district. “I was ready if we’d been put in a seven-team district, but I didn’t see six coming.’’ When last seen, Ringo was on the phone, scouring the San Antonio area for a potential opponent.

*Lake Travis’ run of five straight Class 4A state titles ends with its promotion to Class 5A.

*Look for some scheduling problems in District 4-5A, which features four Keller schools that share one stadium.

*Landing in a six-team district is no big deal for Flower Mound coach Dane Johnson, on the job for only two weeks. At his previous stint at Class 3A Boerne, Johnson said six-team districts were all he knew.

*Corsicana’s move to the East Texas-flavored 16-4A ends district rivalries with Waxahachie and Ennis.

*Amarillo, the Class 5A program with the most wins all-time, drops to Class 4A. Plano will take over the top spot in wins in 5A and Amarillo will be second to Highland Park in 4A.

NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, Texas – Say goodbye to “the little SEC” of Class 4A football.

District 15-4A, as we have come to know it, fell victim to the biennial shuffling of schools, spreading some of the state’s top 4A programs across North Texas.

While fans won’t see the same teams face off next year, coaches from the district formerly know as 15-4A were able to breath a small sigh of relief that they won’t have to face the week-to-week grind of arguably the deepest 4A district in the state.

“There’s no easy 4A district out there,” Mesquite Poteet coach Randy Jackson said. “We’re just happy to know [what the new districts are] so we can move on.”

[+] EnlargeRandy Allen
Travis L. Brown/ESPNDallas.comHighland Park football coach Randy Allen works on his schedule for next year after finding out who else is in the Scots' new district.
Poteet, as well as half of the former 15-4A, will move over into District 10-4A, reuniting with a longtime rival Highland Park.

Poteet and Highland Park not only have a long history as former district-mates, but have a more recent chapter in 2010’s 4A Division II regional round of the playoffs. Poteet notched its first ever win against the Scots in 14 tries.

For the next two years, Highland Park, the school with the state record for playoff appearances, will have the opportunity to get revenge for the unexpected 2010 loss.

“They’re the New York Yankees of high school,” Jackson said.

The re-shuffling of 10-4A came as a complete surprise to Highland Park coach Randy Allen, who had guessed his program would fall in a district with the Frisco ISD schools or Sherman and Dennison.

“It’s a big shakeup,” Allen said. “We’d of never guessed this, but it will be a good district.”

The biggest surprises to Allen were the addition of both Forney ISD schools, Carrollton Newman Smith, Carrollton Creekview and Terrell.

Forney joins West Mesquite and Poteet in moving over from 15-4A, but North Forney will be making its first appearance in the 4A ranks after being a 3A school.

“The biggest deal is we don’t have to play the one-high school towns like Waxahachie and Corsicana and those guys,” Forney coach Kevin Rush said. “That will help us out I think. The one-high school towns have a definite advantage especially when you get up into 4A and 5A. You look around the state and see a lot of schools that are dominant that way.”

Forney is no stranger to Highland Park, as they were district mates for the first six years the program was in Class 4A, and the reunited rivalry is something the players at Forney will look forward to, Rush said.

Those single-school programs southeast of Dallas will remain in 15-4A, joining forces with three Mansfield schools: Lake Ridge, Legacy and Summit.

Once the new 10-4A coaches had a few minutes to wrap their mind around the new alignment, it became obvious to most that they won’t see much of a drop off in competition in their new home.

“I’m not sure this isn’t a little SEC, too,” Jackson said.

Rockwall teams head east instead of DeSoto

February, 2, 2012
NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, Texas -- North Mesquite, Mesquite Horn and Mesquite High will continue their ties to East Texas foes Longview and Tyler Lee for the fifth straight realignment.

This time, the Mesquite schools will be joined by Rockwall and Rockwall-Heath for a seven-team District 12-5A. The Rockwall schools are moving up from Class 4A.

Rockwall was a part of the East Texas district along with the Mesquite schools in 2004-05.

The last two realignments included DeSoto in the East Texas district, but the Eagles got a reprieve this time.

DeSoto athletic director Pam Deborde said the news of a move to District 7-5A to join neighbors Cedar Hill and Duncanville brought a lot of excitement to Eagles athletes on Thursday.

“Now our kids can play teams they grew up playing against and in some cases played on the same teams with,’’ Deborde said. “Our seniors are upset that this didn’t happen in time for them.’’

Mesquite athletic director Steve Bragg was unfazed.

“We’re used to going to East Texas,’’ said Bragg. “We’ve developed some very good friendships. Financially, it is a strain on our school district, but we understand that somebody has to go. Nobody likes to travel but somebody has to. And we’re looking forward to working with the Rockwall schools.’’

Deborde said DeSoto never formed a rivalry in its present district.

“It was time for us, we served our four years,’’ she said.

UIL divides Fort Worth 4A teams into 2 districts

February, 2, 2012
NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, Texas - Breaking up wasn’t all that traumatic for the 10 Fort Worth ISD schools that constituted District 6-4A in the last alignment. It has been six years since at least 10 Fort Worth 4A schools weren’t crammed into one district.

The new District 6-4A will contain five Fort Worth ISD schools: Carter-Riverside, Dunbar, Eastern Hills, North Side and Polytechnic. They will be joined by Birdville the three Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD schools -- Saginaw, Fort Worth Boswell and Fort Worth Chisholm Trail -- to form a nine-team district.

Six Fort Worth teams will move to District 7-4A: Arlington Heights, South Hills, Southwest, Trimble Tech, Western Hills and O.D. Wyatt. They will be joined by Aledo and Granbury to form an eight-team district.

Wyatt football coach Zachary Criss is not sad to see the change.

“With nine district games, you have only one nondistrict game,’’ Criss said. “You have to be careful about scheduling because you don’t want to play somebody tough with the district opener the following week. The old district didn’t help teams get ready for the playoffs because you could go three or four weeks without real competition. That’s not good.’’

With one of his extra nondistrict games, Criss has scheduled Arlington Sam Houston, coached by older brother Anthony Criss, for Zero Week.

Anthony and Zachary say “Criss Bowl’’ does not do the game justice.

“Criss Extravaganza,’’ they say, is more like it.

Four 5A districts in area undergo little change

February, 2, 2012
NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, Texas -- The makeup changed very little or not at all in four of the area’s nine Class 5A districts at Thursday's UIL reclassification and realignment.

*The current District 4-5A (five Arlington schools, Fort Worth Paschal, North Crowley and Weatherford) remained intact but, because of district consolidation in West Texas, changed its number to 3-5A.

That’s an agreeable change, said Anthony Criss, football coach at Arlington Sam Houston and former Arlington ISD assistant athletic director.

“It’s great for Arlington because it means we stay in the area for first-round playoff games instead of going to West Texas,’’ Criss said. “We’d still go west once, but not until the second round.''

*The current District 5-5A retained seven of its eight members in the new District 7-5A: Cedar Hill, DeSoto, Duncanville, Grand Prairie, South Grand Prairie, Mansfield and Mansfield Timberview. The only change is Mansfield Legacy drops down to Class 4A and powerhouse DeSoto takes its place.

“A tough district just got tougher,’’ said Grand Prairie coach Gary Bartel.

*In District 9-5A, Dallas Samuell dropped to Class 4A and was replaced by Richardson Pearce, which is moving back up to 5A. The other seven members are unchanged: Dallas Jesuit, Dallas Skyline, Dallas Sunset, Dallas W.T. White, Richardson, Richardson Berkner and Lake Highlands.

“I wasn’t sure Jesuit would stay in,’’ said Skyline coach Reginald Samples. “In fact, we had agreed to play them in a nondistrict game if they weren’t in our district.’’

*The seven Garland ISD schools that made up 10-5A in the last realignment are now without McKinney Boyd as they go forward as District 11-5A with this lineup: Garland, Garland Lakeview, Garland Naaman Forest, North Garland, Rowlett, Sachse and South Garland.
NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, Texas - The wonder of the Internet makes passing district realignment information across the state as easy as a click of a mouse.

However, the demand for the information caused even more chaos than was already prevalent at Birdville ISD Stadium, the meeting place for North Texas coaches and administrators.

As the minutes ticked past 9 a.m. Thursday, the UIL website failed to load on the computers and projectors in the meeting room and caused problems all around the state.

Coaches were forced to huddle around members of the media and Birdville administrators who received the alignment lists via email press release. As technology failed, the hundreds gathered in the large meeting room were forced to resort to the primitive resource of word-of-mouth communication to relay the information to new district partners.

Social media also blew up around the time of release as people who could not access the UIL website searched for the destination of their team.

UIL officials confirmed that the organization's website servers did not crash but were just overwhelmed by the volume of hits the site was receiving at the same time.

It didn't take long after the initial wave of intrigue for the page to load, allowing football and basketball coaches to settle into the new alignment that will go into play next fall.

UIL realignment by numbers: Cutoffs, moves

February, 2, 2012
Here are the attendance cutoffs (with numbers from last realignment) and numbers of schools in each classification for the UIL realignment that was revealed Thursday:

Class 5A: 2,090 and above (2,065 last realignment), 245 schools
Class 4A: 1,005-2,089 (990-2,064 last realignment), 250 schools
Class 3A: 450-1004 (430-989 last realignment), 190 schools
Class 2A: 200-449 (200-429 last realignment), 235 schools
Class 1A: 199 and below (no change), 390 basketball schools, 168 Eleven-Man Football schools, 138 Six-Man Football schools

Here's a look at the classification changes for area schools:

Class 5A
Moved up from 4A: Carrollton R.L. Turner, Denton Ryan, Keller Timber Creek, McKinney, Richardson Pearce, Rockwall, Rockwall-Heath
Elevated by request: South Garland (2,028 enrollment)

Class 4A
New to UIL: Burleson Centennial, Fort Worth Chisholm Trail, Mansfield Lake Ridge
Moved down from 5A: Dallas Samuell, Denton Guyer, Mansfield Legacy, Saginaw
Moved up from 3A: Fort Worth Polytechnic, Lucas Lovejoy, North Forney, Prosper
Elevated by request: Dallas Lincoln (712 enrollment), Fort Worth Dunbar (767 enrollment)

Class 3A
New to UIL: Dallas Hutchins, Dallas Prime Prep Academy
Moved down from 4A: Stephenville
Moved up from 2A: Irving North Hills, Melissa, Krum

Class 2A
Moved down from 3A: Farmersville, Pilot Point
Moved up from 1A: Dallas Faith Family Academy

Class 1A
New to UIL: Arlington Summit International

What are the biggest surprises in realignment?

February, 2, 2012
We now know the UIL district alignments for the 2012-13 and 2013-14 school years.

We've posted the new districts for area schools. Find 5A here, 4A here and 2A-3A here.

You can find the statewide realignment at the UIL website here.

Use the comments to tell us what surprised you most and what could have been done differently.

UIL realignment: 2-3A districts for area schools

February, 2, 2012
New realignment for area Class 3A and 2A districts, including enrollment numbers

District 6-3A
Mineral Wells (977)
Kennedale (967)
Springtown (940)
Fort Worth Diamond Hill-Jarvis (861)
River Oaks Castleberry (844)
Lake Worth (724)

District 7-3A
Stephenville (999)
Alvarado (974)
Venus (516)
Glen Rose (511)
Hillsboro (458)

District 9-3A
Decatur (883)
Sanger (722)
Gainesville (676)
Bridgeport (628)
Krum (461)

District 10-3A
Carrollton Ranchview (836)
Frisco Lone Star (825)
Argyle (668)
Celina (587)
Aubrey (516)

District 11-3A
Dallas Hutchins (798)
Ferris (679)
Dallas Roosevelt (624)
Dallas Madison (537)
Dallas Prime Prep Academy (500)
Irving North Hills (basketball only) (464)

District 12-3A
Princeton (889)
Anna (578)
Bonham (525)
Nevada Community (481)
Melissa (457)

District 14-3A
Kaufman (998)
Crandall (852)
Wills Point (789)
Quinlan Ford (693)
Emory Rains (516)

District 5-2A-I
Bowie (429)
Pilot Point (428)
Whitesboro (394)
Boyd (386)
Ponder (370)
Callisburg (347)
Paradise (344)

District 6-2A-I
Caddo Mills (444)
Farmersville (443)
Commerce (435)
Van Alstyne (422)
Sunnyvale (373)
Pottsboro (362)
Howe (300)

District 12-2A-I
Godley (439)
Whitney (430)
Grandview (345)
Clifton (325)
Palmer (320)
Maypearl (309)
Red Oak Life School (306)

District 6-2A-II
Life School Oak Cliff (272)
Scurry-Rosser (263)
Blooming Grove (257)
Millsap (256)
Rice (253)
Rio Vista (239)
Corsicana Mildred (237)
Tolar (228)

UIL realignment: 4A districts for area schools

February, 2, 2012
New realignment for area Class 4A districts, including enrollment numbers:

District 5-4A
Denton Guyer (2,064)
Trophy Club Byron Nelson (1,917)
Denton (1,851)
Azle (1,774)
Fort Worth Brewer (1,738)
Wichita Falls Rider (1,698)
Wichita Falls (1,397)
Lake Dallas (1,230)

District 6-4A
Saginaw (1,999)
Birdville (1,916)
Fort Worth Boswell (1,812)
Fort Worth North Side (1,520)
Fort Worth Eastern Hills (1,342)
Fort Worth Chisholm Trail (1,217)
Fort Worth Carter-Riverside (1,171)
Fort Worth Polytechnic (1,165)
Fort Worth Dunbar (787)

District 7-4A
Granbury (1,888)
Fort Worth Trimble Tech (1,790)
Fort Worth Arlington Heights (1,714)
Aledo (1,544)
Fort Worth South Hills (1,551)
Fort Worth Southwest (1,476)
Fort Worth Western Hills (1,453)
Fort Worth O.D. Wyatt (1,235)

District 8-4A
Crowley (1,889)
Cleburne (1,812)
Burleson Centennial (1,617)
Waco (1,479)
Burleson (1,453)
Waco University (1,432)
Joshua (1,360)
Everman (1,258)

District 9-4A
The Colony (1,923)
Frisco Centennial (1,907)
Frisco Liberty (1,769)
Frisco (1,697)
Frisco Wakeland (1,643)
Little Elm (1,578)
Frisco Heritage (1,548)
Prosper (1,257)

District 10-4A
Carrollton Newman Smith (2,083)
Carrollton Creekview (2,037)
Highland Park (2,028)
West Mesquite (1,835)
Mesquite Poteet (1,594)
Forney (1,303)
Terrell (1,052)
North Forney (1,031)

District 11-4A
Dallas Molina (2,007)
Dallas Adamson (1,395)
Dallas Kimball (1,354)
South Oak Cliff (1,338)
North Dallas (1,324)
Dallas Carter (1,039)
Seagoville (1,024)
Dallas Pinkston (1,019)

District 12-4A
Dallas Samuell (1,895)
Dallas Bryan Adams (1,871)
Dallas Woodrow Wilson (1,599)
Dallas Thomas Jefferson (1,426)
Dallas Conrad (1,383)
Dallas Spruce (1,358)
Dallas Hillcrest (1,178)
Dallas Lincoln (712)

District 13-4A
McKinney North (1,771)
Wylie (1,751)
Sherman (1,710)
Wylie East (1,612)
Denison (1,291)
Royse City (1,239)
Greenville (1,204)
Lucas Lovejoy (1,104)

District 15-4A
Mansfield Summit (2,067)
Mansfield Legacy (2,050)
Waxahachie (1,863)
Red Oak (1,838)
Lancaster (1,680)
Arlington Seguin (1,673)
Mansfield Lake Ridge (1,600)
Ennis (1,565)

District 16-4A
Tyler (1,873)
Nacogdoches (1,765)
Corsicana (1,533)
Whitehouse (1,386)
Jacksonville (1,171)
Lindale (1,114)

UIL realignment: 5A districts for area schools

February, 2, 2012
New realignment for area Class 5A districts, including enrollment numbers:

District 3-5A
Arlington Martin (3,333)
Arlington Sam Houston (3,149)
Arlington Bowie (3,082)
Arlington Lamar (2,911)
Arlington (2,886)
Fort Worth Paschal (2,617)
North Crowley (2,317)
Weatherford (2,225)

District 4-5A
Southlake Carroll (2,588)
Keller (2,647)
Keller Central (2,529)
Haltom (2,522)
Justin Northwest (2,331)
Richland (2,264)
Keller Timber Creek (2,200)
Keller Fossil Ridge (2,191)

District 5-5A
Lewisville (3,687)
Coppell (3,254)
Flower Mound (3,247)
Flower Mound Marcus (3,196)
Hebron (3,019)
Denton Ryan (2,125)

District 6-5A
Euless Trinity (3,212)
Irving MaCarthur (3,194)
Irving Nimitz (3,108)
Irving (2,991)
Hurst L.D. Bell (2,803)
Colleyville Heritage (2,291)
Grapevine (2,170)
Carrollton R.L. Turner (2,132)

District 7-5A
Duncanville (4,008)
South Grand Prairie (3,324)
Desoto (2,833)
Mansfield Timberview (2,770)
Grand Prairie (2,702)
Mansfield (2,532)
Midlothian (2,356)
Cedar Hill (2,145)

District 9-5A
Dallas Skyline (4,326)
Richardson Berkner (2,654)
Richardson (2,525)
Dallas W.T. White (2,422)
Lake Highlands (2,229)
Dallas Sunset (2,206)
Dallas Jesuit (2,142)
Richardson Pearce (2,130)

District 10-5A
Plano East (6,016)
Allen (5,388)
Plano (5,315)
Plano West (4,945)
McKinney Boyd (2,900)
McKinney (2,121)

District 11-5A
Garland (2,686)
Garland Lakeview Centennial (2,442)
Garland Naaman Forest (2,485)
Rowlett (2,631)
Sachse (2,640)
North Garland (2,105)
South Garland (2,028)

District 12-5A
Mesquite (2,811)
Tyler Lee (2,621)
North Mesquite (2,493)
Mesquite Horn (2,219)
Rockwall (2,212)
Longview (2,165)
Rockwall-Heath (2,144)

UIL realignment secrecy continues to amaze

January, 30, 2012
It is a given that not all Texas high schools are going to be happy with the University Interscholastic League's biennial reclassification and realignment announcement Thursday.

Pleasing 1,300-plus football- and basketball-playing high schools is something that not even a politician in an election year would promise.

But area coaches and athletic directors say they are never ceased to be amazed by one aspect of the process -- its secrecy.

"Keeping secrets is something not done very well any more," said Mansfield ISD athletic director Debbie Weems. "When most people know things, they like to talk."

Despite state-wide attention -- the information will be revealed once again on Fox Sports Southwest beginning at 9 a.m. -- the UIL has traditionally managed to keep things under wraps well enough for the project to earn the nickname of "Texas' biggest secret."

A half-dozen staffers for the Austin-based UIL toil away over enrollment figures and maps for three months, using pins and rubber bands to determine the district fate of high schools for the next two years.

"I don't even think those guys tell their wives," said 84-year-old Garland athletic director Homer Johnson, a veteran of 32 realignments. "It is a well-kept secret, and to tell you the truth it needs to be. Say, for example, we in Garland found out what the district was going to be before the announcement. It would give us an advantage in scheduling. The UIL tries to do the best for everybody."

Weems concurs.

"I understand why they want to keep it on the down low," she said. "There are always some that, if they found out ahead of time, might be unhappy and try to sabotage it. Like Jack Nicholson's character in "A Few Good Men" said, 'Some people can't handle the truth.'"

Steve Lineweaver, who has coached Euless Trinity to three football state titles, said he remains "baffled" at the way the UIL keeps the information under wraps.

"In this day and age," said Lineweaver, "nobody can keep secrets."

UIL director of athletics Dr. Mark Cousins chuckles when the matter of secrecy is mentioned.

"Well, first of all, we haven't made the announcement yet, so we still have to see if it remains a secret," Cousins said last week. "But the element of security is part of our job description. The state superintendents have told us that they don't want any school to have an unfair advantage, and we take that responsibility very seriously."

Who wants to know?

The state's football head coaches, in particular those in urban areas where changes are most volatile, have the most to gain if they somehow learned the alignment configurations early. It would be a great aid in making nondistrict schedules.

By alignment day, most football coaches have made prearranged agreements for nondistrict games for the next two years. But those plans can go out the window quickly if an agreed-on opponent winds up in the same district.

"It happened to us a couple of times," Allen coach Tom Westerberg said. "The last time, I had my nondistrict games, then we were put in a district with the Lewisville schools and that took away one of those games. That's when we wound up with Longview."

Lineweaver recalls the situation in 2008 that led to the nondistrict series between perennial powerhouses Trinity and Allen.

"Coach Westerberg and I were both having trouble finding a game and finally we sort of looked at each other," Lineweaver said. "I don't think either one of us was all that thrilled about it."

Snapshot of the day

The gathering place for North Texas coaches and athletic directors is North Richland Hills' Birdville ISD Fine Arts and Athletic Complex. The meeting room at the stadium can seat 800 and it is usually packed a half-hour prior to the announcement. The final minutes are passed by munching on breakfast concessions, drinking coffee and visiting.

At the appointed hour as the murmur grows, coaches strain and squint at overhead projectors that reveal the UIL's handiwork. Copies of the new districts, fresh off the UIL website, are quickly made available.

"It's like game day," Lineweaver said. "For me, my eyes get wide, my pulse is beating faster. This is when you find out who you'll be playing the next two years."

Athletic directors Weems and Johnson say they look forward to realignment day, where friendships are renewed.

For their coaches, it is a little more tense. Those needing games for a specific date can make their needs public on message boards. It's not uncommon for deals to be made right there in the meeting room.

"There's a frantic, frenzied atmosphere in that room," Weems said. "The football coaches are looking around wondering, 'How many games am I going to win,' and hoping they don't wind up playing a nondistrict game against somebody like Southlake Carroll."

Weems said earlier in her career she tried to anticipate what district configurations realignment might bring. No longer.

"I've had people calling me wanting to know the enrollment numbers we turned in," Weems said, "trying to figure out where everybody will go. I don't know why. It always comes out the way no one expected. I don't guess any more. I don't want to be disappointed."

Johnson knows the feeling. In his introduction to the process in 1948, Johnson's Garland Owls had the smallest enrollment in their district. The largest was powerful Highland Park.

"I've never been through one that went exactly the way I thought it would go," Johnson said. "Sometimes they put us where we wanted to be. Sometimes not."

The degree of difficulty in finding last-minute nondistrict games goes up in relation to a team's number of wins in the previous year.

"It's an exciting day," said Westerberg, "but not fun when you're trying to find games."

Cousins, who will have a role in the telecast along with UIL executive director Dr. Charles Breithaupt and deputy director Dr. Jamey Harrison, said the day is exciting for the UIL, too. And a nervous one.

"There are always concerns that a school might have been left out," Cousins said. "We know that not everybody will be happy, either about their classification or their district. That's just part of the process and we know that going in."

Those that are disappointed on Thursday can take heart. It is no secret that hope of a more favorable outcome is only two years away.