IHSA schools reject creation of football districts

By a vote of 379-272, with 76 abstentions, the state’s high schools choose to keep conferences, playoffs as is

The idea of football districts failed to sway the IHSA member schools, again.

By a vote of 379-272, with 76 abstentions, the state’s high schools rejected a proposal to create a new system of districts that would have altered the regular-season football schedule and changed the way teams qualify for the playoffs.

Under the proposal, IHSA officials would have been responsible for creating eight statewide districts in each of the eight classes represented in the football playoffs. Eight schools grouped by enrollment and geography would be in each district per class.

The top four teams in each district would have qualified for the playoffs.

Submitted by representatives of the DuPage Valley and three other conferences, the proposal was designed to create stability at a time when, according to district proponents, more than 20 conferences changed alignment in the last 15 years and four new conferences formed in the last five years.

Similar districts proposals failed in past years. Instead of the district format taking effect with the 2024 season, the current system of conferences and playoff qualification will remain the same.

Among the proposals that did pass, football teams will be allowed to conduct a preseason scrimmage with another team.

Also, girls flag football will become an official IHSA sport in the fall.

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