In a little more than a week, the Class 4A landscape is changing in South Texas.
Barring a clerical blunder, like the one that landed Laredo Cigarroa, LBJ and Nixon in 4A two years ago, athletic directors for the three schools have said the programs will go to 5A this time around, even if they have 4A numbers and have to sign waivers to stay in the larger classification.
That means major reshuffling in District 31-4A and nearby 30-4A when the UIL announces its district realignment and reclassifications, Feb. 1. Of course, no one knows for sure how, or if at all, the enrollment figures are changing and what that will mean to each district. No one will now until it's announced that morning; however, one thing is certain, 31-4A — the home of Alice, Calallen, Flour Bluff, Kingsville and Tuloso-Midway is changing.
The Laredo schools entered the district in 2008 when they fell into 4A enrollment and did not officially indicate their willingness to remain in 5A. They appealed the UIL decision, but have spent the last two seasons in 31-4A.
They amounted to “Johnny-come- lately” in the district; programs totally new to the area and completely out of place since before the move to 4A, their district competition was made up mostly of other Laredo schools. The excess travel to the Coastal Bend was an expense for the schools and a gigantic inconvienence for everyone involved. The Friday night football games weren't too bad. It was the long Tuesday night roadies for volleyball, basketball and other teams sports that played twice a week that were the biggest problem.
They're going to 4A, Laredo ISD athletic director Rene Ramirez and United ISD athletic director Bobby Ochoa said in November.
With the Laredo schools gone, the guessing games of what will happen to the Coastal Bend's 4A schools in the upcoming reshuffling are abundant.
Before 2008, 31-4A included Alice, Calallen, Flour Bluff, Kingsville, Robstown and Tuloso-Midway.
There was a time before - when Corpus Christi inner-city schools Miller, Moody and Ray were still in 5A - that 31-4A included the forementioned schools, as well as Gregory-Portland and Rockport-Fulton.
As in previous realignments, Alice could remain in 31-4A and other schools like Gregory-Portland and Rockport-Fulton could be moved back in. There's also a possibility that Alice or Kingsville, the schools on the far west and south end of the 31-4A terroritory, could be clumped in with schools from the Rio Grande Valley. There's also a possibility that some of the present 31-4A schools could be moved to 30-4A with Beeville and some San Antonio schools.