Last week, the San Gabriel Valley Tribune posted the 4th revision of the new CIF Southern Section Football Realignment.  For many coaches around, this was the first time that they were able to see the new proposed divisions.  For some, these divisions caused quite the stir.  I received quite a few questions about the new system, so I thought I would reach out to the CIF office, to help coaches better understand the new system, etc.

One thing that people need to understand is that “CIF” doesn’t just make these changes.  These changes were created and voted on by every single school, through a process by which each league votes on proposals that come forward.  If you don’t like the new format, that needs to be expressed to your school’s principal, and to the league.  Many coaches (especially assistant coaches), parents, kids simply don’t understand how new rules, formats come to be.  As I’ve heard CIF Commissioner Rob Wigod say a lot at Athletic Director meetings: “You are CIF.”

Glenn Martinez, the Asst Commissioner responsible for football in the Southern Section, was kind enough to spend some time answering frequently asked questions about this new realignment.  He most definitely wants folks to know that what was posted is NOT final, and the final divisions won’t be available for some time yet.

Hope this helps!

1.  What is the criteria for putting teams in to the divisions?  How are divisions being determined? Playoff wins weighed more heavily for instance?

Each of the 401 schools that participate in football are assigned a point total and then are ranked 1-401.  I look for natural breaks for divisions as well as the number of two year qualifiers.  In the top divisions, there less schools and as the divisions trickle down they get larger.  By taking into account the number of two year qualifiers I am hoping to create a division where there would still be openings for at-large teams.

CIF- SS Football Power Ranking Point Totals – handout provided by CIF office

Point Formula: Regular season (10 games)

There are four levels of point totals for each division based on wins and losses by an individual football team.  Each division has a point differential of 3 points for each tier both for a win and a loss.  There is a 6 point differential between a win and loss for each tier and a 3 point starting point for each of the divisional groupings.

The Pac 5 and West Valley Divisions are each separate divisional groups.  The Inland, Southeast and Southwest Divisions are all in a divisional group.  The Central, Eastern, Northern and Western Divisions are all in a divisional group.  The East Valley, Mid-Valley, Northwest and Southern Divisions are all in a divisional group. 

Pac 5 Division:

Tier 1   Win = 50          Loss = 44

Tier 2   Win = 47          Loss = 41

Tier 3   Win = 44          Loss = 38

Tier 4   Win = 41          Loss = 35

West Valley Division:

Tier 1   Win = 47          Loss = 41

Tier 2   Win = 44          Loss = 38

Tier 3   Win = 41          Loss = 35

Tier 4   Win = 38          Loss = 32

Inland, Southeast and Southwest Divisions:

Tier 1   Win = 44          Loss = 38

Tier 2   Win = 41          Loss = 35

Tier 3   Win = 38          Loss = 32

Tier 4   Win = 35          Loss = 29

Central, Eastern, Northern and Western Divisions:

Tier 1   Win = 41          Loss = 35

Tier 2   Win = 38          Loss = 32

Tier 3   Win = 35          Loss = 29

Tier 4   Win = 32          Loss = 26

East Valley, Mid-Valley, Northwest and Southern Divisions:

Tier 1   Win = 38          Loss = 32

Tier 2   Win = 35          Loss = 29

Tier 3   Win = 32          Loss = 26

Tier 4   Win = 29          Loss = 23

Point Formula:

Post Season (Playoffs)

Playoff wins (bonus points) are awarded for each round that a football team wins a contest.  Each round awards additional points based on a formula listed below.  The Pac 5 Division and West Valley Divisions have win point total differentials of 10 for each round.  The Inland, Southeast and Southwest Divisions have a win point total differential of 10.  The Central, Eastern, Northern and Western Divisions have a win point total differential of 10.  The East Valley, Mid-Valley, Northwest and Southern Divisions have a win point total differential of 10.

All first round losses for all 13 division team earn 10 points (bonus points) for making the playoffs.

Pac 5 Division:

1st Round                    Win = 70          Loss = 10

2nd Round                   Win = 80

Semi Final Round       Win = 90

Finals                           Win = 100

West Valley Division:

1st Round                    Win = 60          Loss = 10

2nd Round                   Win = 70

Semi Final Round       Win = 80

Finals                           Win = 90

Inland, Southeast and Southwest Divisions:

1st Round                    Win = 50          Loss = 10

2nd Round                   Win = 60

Semi Final Round     Win = 70

Finals                           Win = 80

Central, Eastern, Northern and Western Divisions:

1st Round                    Win = 40          Loss = 10

2nd Round                   Win = 50

Semi Final Round    Win = 60

Finals                           Win = 70

East Valley, Mid-Valley, Northwest and Southern Divisions:

1st Round                    Win = 30          Loss = 10

2nd Round                   Win = 40

Semi Final Round       Win = 50

Finals                           Win = 60

2.  How does league placement effect a team’s ability to make the playoffs?  In other words, do you have to finish 1-2-3 to make the playoffs?  How does a team make the playoffs?

The CIF-SS Proposal that was passed by our member schools listed the criteria.  Depending on a leagues automatic qualifiers, each division would take the 1st place finishers, then 2nd place finishers and finally the 3rd place finishers.

(Editor’s Note: there has been a significant change in playoffs, as voted on my every league.  See the new Playoff Bylaw Changes.)

(Editor’s Note: I broke down Division 10.  There are 31 schools.  Based on breaking down 2015 results, 12 teams automatically qualified for playoffs, leaving room for 4 At Large teams.)

3.  This “proposal” that was released by a media outlet last week, how different will the final divisions be from that?  Most folks think “it’s gotta be pretty close.”  Would that be accurate description?

At this point as I have mentioned, I am working on my latest revision.  I still have to check each schools point totals (numbers) and look at where I believe the divisional breaks should be.  My crystal ball isn’t clear yet as to what the final divisions will be!

 

4.  Will there be any sort of appeals process once divisions are determined and released in August?

No, the only appeal would be if the numbers were not correct.  There is no other appeal process.

ciffootballplayoffs2012

5. In a sport that thrives on numbers of kids in a program, and has a goal of 22 different starters, why is school enrollment not being considered?

The basis for the new competitive equity playoff format was always based on placing schools that are competitive based on a point or numbers format.  Enrollment was not part of the proposal.  If our member schools wanted enrollment based playoffs they could have suggested this or developed a proposal.

The previous format did not place much emphasis on enrollment.  There were many divisions where small enrollment schools played large enrollment schools.  Enrollment is a misleading number.  There are many schools with large enrollments who have had little or no success in football, and on the flip side there are many schools with small enrollments who have been very successful.

 

6.  Do you think that injuries might increase with some programs with 30 kids being matched against programs with 100+ as some of the divisions show?

No, that could occur in the previous format.  The basis for the competitive equity playoff divisions is to put similar schools together in divisions.

 

7.  What will be the At Large Criteria?  

I have attached the at-large criteria in this email.

Football At-Large Criteria

 

8.  Tesoro and San Clemente ending up in D1 is intriguing to me.  Tesoro hasn’t been past the 2nd round since 2011.  San Clemente is going to go from opening up with Sunny Hills in the playoffs to maybe Bosco or Mater Dei. Quite a leap for them.  

Pure numbers and the formula move these guys up?  Was it strength of league?  

Yes, both Tesero and San Clemente have had large point totals the past two years.  San Clemente has been in the Finals the last two years, and is not in the South Coast League with Tesero and Mission Viejo.

You have to remember that the competitive equity model is going to put the best school in the best divisions.  Division 1 is going to be as difficult as it has ever been, but that is the point in going to this model.

 

9.  So, a program gets moved up because of a stellar last two years.  But they had a tremendous class, all of who graduates.  This seems to be a common concern.  How is this addressed?

The initial rankings are based on the last two years of data which was exactly what we have done in the past.  Under the previous system we would have looked at leagues performance for the past two years, so this is no different.

What is different however is that after the 2016 season is complete, that data will be added to 2015 and the 2014 data will drop off.  Then new numbers will be run and schools will be re-ranked and divisions drawn up.  Again under the old system you were locked in to that division for two years, this system will change every year.

Check out the So Cal Football Coaching Carousel that Fore has been keeping track of here.  There have been more than 100 changes this year in Southern California.

Chris Fore is the founder of Eight Laces Consulting.  He has been an Athletic Director in Southern California, is currently on the California Coaches Association Board of Reps, and earned his Masters degree in Athletic Administration.  Currently, he is the Special Teams Coordinator at Sultana High School.  Fore has written several books in the field of athletics, including An Insider’s Guide To Scoring Your Next Coaching Job.  He uses his experience as an AD to help coaches weave together a plan to find their coaching dream job.

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