Story by: Dennis Weaver
The TSSAA Board of Control, meeting this week in Murfreesboro, passed new regulations regarding prep football practices that will go in effect with the opening of fall practice in July. The measures, aimed at programs who use “two-a-day” practices, sets new guidelines in regards to the frequency of these sessions and the overall time spent in practice.
The measure, which passed by a 7 to 2 vote, will limit schools from having 2 practices a day on consecutive days. Additionally, if a team has multiple practices in pads on a single day, the total time in pads cannot exceed 5 hours. Coaches must also insure that the two practices are separated by at least 3 hours of rest in cool conditions for the players. Any athlete that practices twice in one day, would be limited to 1 practice on the following day. The new practice policy also dictates that any practice session in pads may not exceed 3 hours in a single practice.
Also on the docket, the TSSAA staff presented 3 new classification strategies for Division 1 football. The TSSAA staff proposed three ideas for the Board of Control to consider for Tennessee high school football for 2015: keep the current six-class system, return to five classes (last used in 2008) or adopt their recommended hybrid six-class plan. Board members were advised to take the proposals back to their coaches from comments and discussion. The earliest this plan could be voted on would be the August Board of Control meeting. No classification changes would take effect until 2015.
The new approach recommended by the TSSAA staff would place the 32 high schools in Tennessee with the highest enrollment in Class 6A, with the remainder of the 273 schools divided into 5 classifications. Class 6A would compete in 4 regions with each team advancing to the playoffs. The other 5 classifications would be divided into 8 regions with the top 4 teams in each region advancing to the playoffs.
This hybrid plan, based on CURRENT enrollment, would place Coffee County in Class 5A in a “projected” Region 5-5A with Cane Ridge,, Columbia Central, Franklin County, Glencliff, Lincoln County, Shelbyville Central and Stewarts Creek. Tullahoma would be placed in Class 4A with a projected Region 4-4A of Hillsboro, Lawrence County, Lipscomb, Spring Hill and Summit.
Story by: Dennis Weaver