January 2, 2006

South Texas 5A/4A Realignment Predictions



It's hard to pin down what the UIL might do with the dynamic south Texas region. The Corpus Christi area appears to be shrinking in overall numbers, while the Laredo and Rio Grande Valley areas are among the fastest growing populations in the nation.

Assuming the UIL increases the 5-A D-1 playoff field to 64 per division, each district will have 7 schools or more (no more 6-team districts). The Dallas and Houston area look to net one additional district each, but those districts have to come from somewhere. The shrinking Corpus Christi area is likely one of the places it'll come.

It isn't likely the UIL will increase 4-A D-1 playoff fields to 64, but rather leave them at 32. With only 3 playoff teams per district, it is not out of the question that some districts will end up at 6 teams.

Using current enrollment figures, here is how I think it shakes out:



The loss of Corpus Christi Moody and Corpus Christi Miller to 4A coupled with a growing Laredo/Rio Grande Valley forces the big schools in Corpus Christi to consolidate northward. Victoria Memorial, Corpus Christi Carroll, Corpus Christi King, and Corpus Christi Ray will be absorbed into a San Antonio-area district.



Laredo Alexander
Laredo Cigarroa
Laredo Johnson
Laredo Martin
Laredo Nixon
Laredo United
Laredo United South

Cigarroa, Johnson, and Martin are thought to have turned in 4A-level numbers, but opted 5A to stay in the area. Eagle Pass opens a new school (C.C. Winn), and joins Eagle Pass High in 29-4A.


La Joya
McAllen Memorial
McAllen Rowe
Rio Grande City

Edinburg Economedes
Edinburg North

The upper Valley will likely be similar, with the addition of the Edinburg schools.


PSJA North
PSJA Memorial




Harlingen South


The Mid-Valley is projected to re-join old rivals, and begin some new ones as well. PSJA Memorial takes the jump to 5A, after establishing a winning reputation in the 4A ranks. What Weslaco and Donna lost in competition from Edinburg schools, they will more than make up for with the addition of high-powered offenses and stout defense in Sharyland, Harlingen, and Harlingen South.


Brownsville Hanna
Brownsville Pace
Brownsville Porter
Brownsville Rivera

Brownsville Lopez
Los Fresnos

San Benito

With Lopez joining Brownsville peers in the 5A ranks, a solidified core of Brownsville-area 5A schools is formed. The "Battle of the Arroyo" (Harlingen vs San Benito) may not be a district game, but I suspect the stakes will be higher as the two rivals find each other in a 64-team playoff field.


Corpus Christi Calallen
Corpus Christi Flour Bluff
Kingsville King


Corpus Christi Moody

Corpus Christi Miller

The coastal bend will almost certainly change, with the addition of the two Corpus Christi schools and the possible loss of Rockport Fulton, whose enrollment is on the bubble for 3A. Tuloso-Midway (1,008) is another school on the 3-A bubble, but will likely hold on to 4-A for at least one more round of realignments. Port Lavaca Calhoun, currently in 24- 4A, is another school with potential to find their way to this battle-tested district.


Mission Memorial
Weslaco East

The Valley 4A district suffers for the loss of PSJA Memorial and Brownsville Lopez to the 5A ranks. However, serious playoff opportunities present themselves for teams in the district traditionally dominated by 'La Maquina Amarilla' (The Yellow Machine) from Edcouch-Elsa. As 31-4A continues to bust at the seams, I would not be surprised to see Alice or Kingsville King be considered for this district as well. However, I suspect travel concerns will force the UIL to keep them in 31-4A if at all possible.

Three schools that don't make the 4A cutoff this year, but will likely grow into 4A schools in 2008 are Valley View (800), Zapata (857), and Hidalgo (836).






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