Crittenden County will be playing football in Class 2A starting next year.
The change was officially announced Monday when the Kentucky High School Athletic Association unveiled its realignment of classes and districts for the 2011-2014 seasons.
The Rockets will join Caldwell County, Murray, Reidland and Ballard Memorial in the Class 2A First District. Union County will also be in Class 2A, but will play in the Second District alongside Hancock County, McLean County, Owensboro Catholic and Todd Central.
Periodic realignment is necessary to keep classes competitive and assure that schools play against teams with similar school populations. The KHSAA classifies teams based on a school's male student population in grades nine through 12.
Crittenden County, which has almost 390 students, had 211.5 male students from the two-year average enrollment average used by the KHSAA. Crittenden will be the fifth smallest school playing in Class 2A. Ballard is even smaller with 210 male students. Meanwhile, Caldwell is second largest in the 2A division with 324.5 students. Union County is the largest with 330. Murray has 230 male students and Reidland 255.
Reidland is a team much improved under new head coach Jon Hedges (a former Murray HIgh and Western Kentucky University players). However, the Greyhounds will be in the league for only one year before its scheduled consolidation with other McCracken County schools.
Rocket coach Al Starnes said the new district alignment will give Crittenden and opportunity to compete for a championship every year.
"There are no Mayfields in there," he said.
However, the Rocket coach said the district will be much competitive top to bottom than the current Class A First District where Crittenden has finished first or second the last four years against Mayfield, Fulton City, Fulton County and Ballard Memorial.
With five teams in the new district starting next fall, Crittenden will have to win at least one district game to get into the playoffs. That will be a tough chore in the balanced league.
"It will be very competitive. Getting that one win will huge because it's not like you will be playing teams that a really bad. Reidland is much better, Ballard has improved, Caldwell is always a thorn in our side and Murray is a traditional power that is always big and physical," Starnes said.
Mayfield will stay in class A as its largest team enrollment wise.
Coach Starnes is still working on the non-district schedule for next year There will be five games outside of league play and right now Starnes is talking with Muhlenberg County, Massac County, Ill., Trigg County, Hopkins County Centrall, Madisonville and Union County. Crittenden will likely play some combination of five or those six teams next season. Webster County and McLean County have dropped the Rockets from their schedules, Starnes said.
District 1 - Fulton City, Fulton County, Mayfield, Russellville District 2 - Bethlehem, Caverna, Holy Cross (Louisville), Kentucky Country Day District 3 - Bracken County, Eminence, Frankfort, Paris District 4 - Beechwood, Bellevue, Dayton, Ludlow District 5 - Berea, Campbellsville, Lynn Camp, Williamsburg District 6 - Harlan, Hazard, Jenkins, Pineville District 7 - Fairview, Nicholas County, Paintsville, Raceland District 8 - Allen Central, Phelps, Pikeville, South Floyd
District 1 - Ballard Memorial, Caldwell County, Crittenden County, Murray, Reidland District 2 - Hancock County, McLean County, Owensboro Catholic, Todd County Central, Union County District 3 - Butler County, Clinton County, Glasgow, Green County, Metcalfe County District 4 - Bardstown, Christian Academy-Louisville, DeSales, Fort Knox, Shawnee, Washington County District 5 - Carroll County, Gallatin County, Owen County, Trimble County, Walton-Verona District 6 - Bishop Brossart, Holy Cross (Covington), Lloyd Memorial, Newport, Newport Central Catholic District 7 - Danville, Leslie County, Lexington Christian, Middlesboro, Somerset District 8 - Betsy Layne, Prestonsburg, Russell, Shelby Valley
District 1 - Fort Campbell, Heath, Paducah Tilghman, Trigg County, Webster County, District 2 - Adair County, Edmonson County, Hart County, Monroe County, South Warren District 3 - Central, Elizabethtown, Henry County, Larue County, Western Hills District 4 – Bell County, Casey County, Corbin, McCreary Central, Wayne County District 5 - Bath County, Bourbon County, Estill County, Garrard County, Powell County District 6 - East Carter, Fleming County, Lewis County, Mason County, West Carter District 7 - Breathitt County, Jackson County, Knott County Central, Magoffin County, Morgan County District 8 - Belfry, East Ridge, Lawrence County, Pike County Central, Sheldon Clark
District 1 - Calloway County, Hopkins County Central, Lone Oak, Madisonville-North Hopkins, Owensboro District 2 - Allen County-Scottsville, Breckinridge County, Franklin-Simpson, Warren East District 3 - Atherton, Collins, North Oldham, Spencer County, Waggener District 4 – Doss, Fairdale, Moore, Valley, Western District 5 - Boyle County, Lexington Catholic, Marion County, Mercer County, Taylor County District 6 - Clay County, Knox Central, Rockcastle County, Russell County District 7 - Covington Catholic, Harrison County, Highlands, Holmes, Pendleton County District 8 - Ashland Blazer, Boyd County, Greenup County, Johnson Central, Rowan County
District 1 - Apollo, Christian County, Graves County, Hopkinsville, Ohio County District 2 - Barren County, Bowling Green, Greenwood, Logan County, Warren Central District 3 - Grayson County, Iroquois, Jeffersontown, John Hardin, North Hardin District 4 - Anderson County, Bullitt Central, Bullitt East, North Bullitt, Shelby County District 5 - Conner, Cooper, Grant County, Scott, South Oldham District 6 - East Jessamine, Franklin County, Montgomery County, West Jessamine, Woodford County District 7 - Lincoln County, Madison Southern, North Laurel, Pulaski County, South Laurel, Southwestern District 8 - Harlan County, Letcher County Central, Perry County Central, Whitley County
District 1 - Daviess County, Henderson County, Marshall County, Muhlenberg County District 2 - Central Hardin, Meade County, Nelson County, Paul Laurence Dunbar District 3 – Butler, Pleasure Ridge Park, Seneca, Southern District 4 - DuPont Manual, Male, St. Xavier, Trinity (Louisville) District 5 - Ballard, Eastern, Fern Creek, Oldham County District 6 - Boone County, Campbell County, Dixie Heights, Ryle District 7 - Bryan Station, Henry Clay, Scott County, Simon Kenton District 8 - George Rogers Clark, Lafayette, Madison Central, Tates Creek