WIAA Task Force Conducts Conference Realignment Reviews & Appeals

Stevens Point – The Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association Conference Realignment Task Force Committee reviewed plans on Jan. 6 that were initially advanced for further consideration and to conduct appeals of realignment requests that were denied last month.

The 11-player realignment proposals that were advanced for further review – including a combination of those submitted by De Soto, Horicon/Hustisford and Pardeeville, River Falls and West Salem, and Sun Prairie East and Sun Prairie West – will be advanced to the Board of Control for final approval at its March 5 meeting, with the exception of the conferences included in a modified Marinette realignment proposal that requires another review on Feb. 11.

In addition, the modified 8-player plan that originated with requests from De Soto, Lake Holcombe, Niagara and Pembine/Goodman and forms nine 8-player football conferences will advance to the Board for final consideration on March 5.

The 11-player realignment plans to be reviewed by the Board moves 20 programs from their existing conference affiliation. An additional three programs will change conference affiliation if the Marinette proposal is advanced from the February committee meeting and approved by the Board at its March 5 meeting. If approved, the football-only realignment plans become effective in 2022. The list of 11-player programs changing conferences in plans being advanced to the Board are:

11-Player
Baraboo of the Badger-Small Conference to the Mississippi Valley Conference.
Beloit Memorial of the Big Eight Conference to the Southern Lakes Conference.
DeForest of the Badger-Large Conference to the Badger-Small Conference.
Delavan-Darien of the Southern Lakes Conference to the Rock Valley Conference.
Edgewood of the Rock Valley Conference to the Capitol Conference.
Horicon/Hustisford of the Capitol Conference to the Eastern Suburban Conference.
Iowa-Grant of the Southwest Wisconsin Activities League to the Ridge & Valley Conference.
Janesville Craig of the Badger Conference-Large to the Big Eight Conference.
Janesville Parker of the Badger Conference-Large to the Big Eight Conference.
Lancaster of the Southwest Wisconsin Activities League to the Southwest Wisconsin Conference.
New Glarus/Monticello of the Southwest Wisconsin Conference to the Capitol Conference.
Pardeeville of the Eastern Suburban Conference to the Trailways Conference.
Pittsville of the Central Wisconsin-Small Conference to the Marawood Conference.
Reedsburg of the Badger-Small Conference to the Mississippi Valley Conference.
Rice Lake of the Big Rivers Conference to the Middle Border Conference.
River Falls of the Mississippi Valley Conference to the Big Rivers Conference.
Sun Prairie East of the Big Eight Conference to the Badger-Large Conference.
Sun Prairie West (New School) to the Badger-Large Conference.
Watertown Luther Prep from the Capitol Conference to the Midwest Classic Conference.
West Salem of the Mississippi Valley Conference to the Coulee Conference.

The Task Force Committee denied the appeals from Ashland, Hayward, Oshkosh North and Oshkosh West, West Allis Central and West Allis Hale, and an original plan submitted by Marinette. The schools that had their appeals denied are granted the opportunity to appeal directly to the Board of Control at its meeting on Jan. 27.

Marinette presented a modified proposal that was advanced to the Task Force Committee meeting on Thursday, Feb. 11. All schools affected by Marinette’s modified realignment proposal may appear in person, virtually or by submitting a written statement at the meeting on Feb. 11.

The three 11-player programs that would alter their conference affiliation with the modified Marinette proposal advancing to the Task Force Committee meeting on Feb. 11 for further review are:

11- Player Football Modified Marinette Proposal
Clintonville of the Packerland Conference to the Northwoods Conference.
Fox Valley Lutheran of the Bay Conference to the North Eastern Conference.
Marinette of the North Eastern Conference to the Packerland Conference.

The 8-player and 11-player football conference realignment plans with a composite listing of the detailed proposed conference affiliations are linked below and available on the “Requests and Proposals” option on the WIAA’s Conference Realignment web page.

8-Player Football Realignment Plan
11-Player Football Realignment Plan
11-Player Football Marinette Modified Plan

The intent of the new conference realignment process is to apply a more formalized method for member schools to request relief from conference affiliations. A committee of member school administrators has been established to evaluate all realignment requests and present them to the Board, which retains the authority to make final determinations of all conference alignment decisions.

The new collaborative model adds structure, enhanced communication and transparency to the realignment process. All levels of school administration at each member school are informed of the committee’s deliberations and decisions.

The membership of the WIAA oversees interscholastic athletic programs for 514 senior high schools and 46 junior high/middle level schools in its membership.

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David Keech
Author: David Keech

David Keech is a math teacher in Wisconsin Rapids and public address announcer for Abbotsord High School. He officiates basketball, baseball, and softball in central Wisconsin. He has reported on amateur sports since 2011, known as 'KeechDaVoice.' David can be reached at [email protected]