CIAC Announces 2014 Spring Football Participants

The CIAC has announced its list of 2014 spring and non-spring football teams.

Spring football teams are allowed to conduct practice for 10 days any time after Memorial Day, but must end before the end of the school’s year.

Only freshmen, sophomores and juniors are allowed to participate in spring practices. The first three days teams are required to hold conditioning practice without full pads. Athletes involved in spring sports must end their seasons before participating in spring football.

Teams that elect not to hold spring practices are allowed to begin fall practice four days earlier than spring teams.

A couple of notes:

  • There are 70 programs conducting spring football practice, up from 64 a year ago.
  • Seventy-six teams will be conducting extra fall practice, down from 82 a year ago.

The list confirms the following new co-op teams:

  • Abbott Tech/Immaculate
  • Bulkeley/Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy (HMTCA)
  • Sacred Heart/Kaynor Tech, Capital Prep/Achievement First
  • Public Safety Academy / Metropolitan Learning Center / Two Rivers Magnet / Academy of Aerospace & Engineering (all members of Hartford’s CREC school system)
  • Vinal Tech/East Hampton/Goodwin Tech


Traditional Spring Football (70)

  • Amity
  • Ansonia
  • Bassick
  • Berlin
  • Bethel
  • Bridgeport Central
  • Brien McMahon
  • Bristol Central
  • Bullard Havens Tech
  • Bunnell
  • Cheshire
  • Coginchaug
  • Coventry/Windham Tech/Bolton
  • Danbury
  • Daniel Hand
  • Darien
  • Derby
  • East Haven
  • Enfield
  • Fairfield Prep
  • Fairfield Warde
  • Greenwich
  • Griswold
  • Guilford
  • Hamden
  • Harding
  • Hillhouse
  • Hyde Leadership
  • Jonathan Law
  • Kennedy
  • Lewis Mills
  • Lyman Hall
  • Manchester
  • Masuk
  • Montville
  • Naugatuck
  • New Canaan
  • New Fairfield
  • New London
  • New Milford
  • Newtown
  • North Haven
  • Norwalk
  • Norwich Free Academy
  • Oxford
  • Platt
  • Pomperaug
  • Prince Tech
  • Rockville
  • Seymour
  • Shelton
  • Southington
  • St. Joseph
  • St. Paul Catholic
  • Staples
  • Tolland
  • Trinity Catholic
  • Trumbull
  • West Haven
  • Westhill
  • Weston
  • Whitney Tech
  • Wilbur Cross
  • Wilby
  • Windham
  • Windsor Locks/Suffield/East Granby
  • Windsor
  • Wolcott
  • Woodland
  • Xavier

Additional Days in Fall (76)

  • Abbott Tech/Immaculate
  • Avon
  • Bacon Academy
  • Bloomfield
  • Branford
  • Bristol Eastern
  • Brookfield
  • Bulkeley/HMTCA
  • Canton
  • Capital/Achievement
  • Cheney Tech
  • Conard
  • Cromwell
  • Crosby
  • E.O. Smith
  • East Catholic
  • East Hartford
  • East Lyme
  • Ellington/Somers
  • Fairfield Ludlowe
  • Farmington
  • Fermi
  • Fitch
  • Foran
  • Gilbert/NW Regional
  • Glastonbury
  • Granby Memorial
  • Haddam-Killingworth
  • Hall
  • Hartford Public
  • Holy Cross
  • Housatonic/Wamogo
  • Joel Barlow
  • Killingly
  • Ledyard
  • Maloney
  • Middletown
  • Morgan
  • New Britain
  • Newington
  • Nonnewaug
  • North Branford
  • Northwest Catholic
  • Notre Dame-Fairfield
  • Notre Dame-West Haven
  • O’Brien Tech
  • Old Saybrook/Westbrook
  • Plainfield
  • Plainville
  • Platt Tech
  • Public Safety/MLC/Two Rivers/AAE
  • Quinebaug Valley
  • RHAM
  • Ridgefield
  • Rocky Hill
  • SMSA/University
  • Sacred Heart/Kaynor Tech
  • Sheehan
  • Simsbury
  • South Windsor
  • St. Bernard/Norwich Tech
  • Stafford/East Windsor
  • Stamford
  • Stonington
  • Stratford
  • Torrington
  • Valley Regional/Old Lyme
  • Vinal Tech/East Hampton/Goodwin Tech
  • Waterford
  • Watertown
  • Weaver
  • Wethersfield
  • Wilcox Tech
  • Wilton
  • Wolcott Tech
  • Woodstock Academy


  1. P-Daddy says

    curious: Where will the state finals be played? I thought CCSU was a one year contract (that was snowed out).

    • Tard says

      These morons will be having 8 championship games this season so one venue will not work. I don’t think any thought was put into the 2014-15 season so who knows where they are playing.

  2. Pat McGroin says

    YESS!!! Morons! That’s what they are…. The coaches involved and the CIAC – totally incompentent. They need to hire people that actually do this for a living.

  3. Tard says

    Just too bad for the seniors of 2015! The decision made for this season is probably the worse decision that could have been made. They should have just postponed the thanksgiving day games for one season instead of 8 champions. California only has 5 state champions!

  4. Coachlbz says

    Football comittee should be required to play “If I Only Had A Brain” from the Wizard of Oz at the start of every meeting!

  5. go rams says

    coaches are going to have make a choice…thanksgiving day or 3 rounds of playoffs…not getting both

    • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

      YES. ABSOLUTELY. Was *just* having this conversation yesterday.

      They’re jumping through hoops trying to get both. What’s going to happen is this: They’re going to push through something that tries to combine both and it’s going to be an utter horror show.

      Stoppit, guys.

      I love Thanksgiving, but a fair and valuable playoff system cannot exist with it in place.

      We must go the way of Conard-Hall and play our Thanksgiving rivalries on the Friday or Saturday before. The games will retain the importance and the finality of Thanksgiving (it is, after all, the end of the regular season), not to mention that it’s still played on the first weekend when alumni begin to come home (heck, when I was a kid I made the 5-hour ride home from college the day before). If they’re truly must-see rivalry games — and there aren’t that many to begin with — then the big games will still pack them in. Besides, attendance has dwindled over the years and far too many teams play the Wednesday night before anyway, what’s the difference? You just won’t have anything to do on Thanksgiving morning.

      DO NOT make Thanksgiving a playoff interlude. That’s beyond dumb and makes no sense (what other sport does this, play a regular season game after the regular season in the middle of the playoffs?)

      • Jay says

        We just moved to CT this year and I been following this pretty close, my son will be a senior on 2017 so I hope this mess will be taken care of by then. But just wanted to say that you definitely have the most common sense approach and the district model submitted by Mr. Glasz should be the way of the future. Now how do we get the CIAC to see the light?

        • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

          They won’t, because we’re too tied to a tradition that, while nice, is fast becoming outdated. It’s only really special when it comes to the old school rivalries, but even those are losing their luster.

          What are the best and longest Thanksgiving Day rivalries? There are only a handful… Ansonia/Naugy, Shelton/Derby, Green Bowl, NFA/New London, Stonington/Westerly…)

          And the rest either never played on Thanksgiving until the last 20 years (FCIAC including NC-Darien), SWC, West Haven-Prep, North Haven-Amity, Southington/Cheshire, Woodland/Seymour) or have already moved theirs to Wednesday night (Guilford/Hand).

          The rest are fabrications with no real tradition to tie them down. Conard/Hall gets a pretty good attendance, from what I understand. We should just bite the bullet and make like them and solve this issue once and for all.

          Keeping the Thanksgiving slate of games as the end of the regular season would preserve the finality and excitement of Thanksgiving where all of these games’ importance get ratcheted up a few more notches because they ALL factor into playoff points. If we make Thanksgiving as some kind of interlude for the playoffs, it’ll just feel like a sideshow. What importance would these games have? Significantly less than if they are part of the regular season.

          If a team wants to keep it as close to a Thanksgiving feel as possible, then play 10:30 a.m. on the Saturday morning before. Then start the state playoffs the week after. Problem: Solved.

          As for the District Model, well, that’d take wholesale small-school revolt against their conference overlords at the administration level. In other words, don’t hold your breath.

          • Dr. Von Nostran says

            With Bassick and Harding moving to the CSC, the District Model is the only way to save the annual New Canaan/Bassick game.

    • JB says

      District model is DOA from what I hear.

      Next best thing? Change that darn CIAC point system … we’ll call it the “virtual district model” that factors in strength of schedule based on size and quality of opponent … not the real district thing (which we all agree would be ideal) but at least we move the playoff qualification up a competitive rung, closer to reality.

      Add two mandatory intra-conference cross-over tilts (a.k.a., more “challenge games”). Need to make the regular season more competitive and unite the state at same time.

      Keep T-day as the traditional “play-in” day across the state … for teams on the bubble it is very important and for others, it can be spoiler-type revenge. And, yes, it does need to be on T-day to reach the greatest number of fans … why? because we love football, family and turkey … all together on that Thursday.

      Playoffs … 4 Divisions with 4 teams in each bracket seeded by the new point system.

      Virtual reality … let’s use that darn computer better. We are in the Information Age are we not?

      • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

        4 divisions of 4 teams is … just … no.

        Lots of 1-loss teams stuck home just to keep Thanksgiving. No. What are we playing for? If we’re just playing for Thanksgiving then scrap the playoffs altogether.

  6. Dave says

    If my team made the playoffs and were playing the Friday or Saturday after Thanksgiving that would be worth waiting for and not having a game on Thanksgiving…..would be more tolerable.

    I agree playing the last regular season game on Saturday morning would still give “The coach, George DeMaio” a chance to do his thing…..the excitement of who is “in” would still be there……

    If my team didn’t make the playoffs, I would definitely travel to see another team from our conference or perhaps one that I had a rooting interest in play in a State tournament game on Friday or Saturday after turkey day….a good game, competitive…one that meant something to someone!

    Finally a state Champioship we could be proud of!!…..8 teams, 4 divisions…..”just play boys…play!!”

    Win baby win!!!!

    • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

      Yes. Exxxxactly. Everything’s the same except we don’t get to eat a banquet afterward… (well, you can, if you want it just won’t be a federal holiday).

      Anyway… Yes. This is the way we must go.

  7. JB says

    Giving up T-day across the entire state to add an extra playoff round isn’t worth it. Look back on those games … too many pretenders were making the playoffs. Certain leagues were just protecting their top teams by feeding them regular season cupcakes … their vaunted 1-loss teams then got blown out in the first round … and often by some 2-loss SCC or FCIAC teams. Was a waste of time.

    All we need is cross-over games and a better point system to weed them out.

    • go rams says

      JB, you just dont get it !!! Your choice is no t-day or 8 state champions. The concussion hysteria drives the car….so forget about your lame ideas and make a decision. Cant have both

      • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

        Well, the real choice is No Thanksgiving “DAY” (I’d argue there’d be a Thanksgiving “Week”) and eight participants per four divisions, or just go back to Six champs and Four participants each.

        Anything else is bloated and silly.

      • JB says

        @go ram – that 8 state champ thing this year is designed to get everyone all upset enough to throw in the towel on T-day and league championships. Don’t fall for it. And the 8-team playoffs were lame … with that “farce round” that was added. It did nothing to make the playoffs more competitive. We need bigger reform than that – we need regular season cross-over games and a better point system that incorporates strength of schedule. The state playoffs shouldn’t be filled with a bunch of 1-loss pretenders from weak conferences like the last few years.

        • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

          What you really want is to exclude the rest of the state and just create a ‘power’ division. You want to reward programs that have the geographical fortune to reside in a ‘stronger’ league and say “tough luck! you’re in the Pequot. Jeez, it’s like the NCAA around here.

          • JB says

            No exclusions … add really well matched cross-over games between the leagues and adjust the point totals for strength of schedule to make the results fair. Let’s find the best teams before the limited playoff slate is set, not afterwards. Without the district model, the only way is via more cross-over games and strength of schedule adjusted points. T-day is just a smoke screen to the real issue. 8-team playoffs without a better selection process didn’t work, otherwise it would have been a no-brainer for the committee to eliminate T-day this year.

          • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

            They won’t/can’t eliminate Thanksgiving because superintendents principals et al are too in love with the money (and maybe them, too), has nothing to do with anything else.

            Where I’m here to say that they’ll make comparable money playing weekend before.

            Under 8 teams/4 playoffs, all the deserving teams pretty much got in with very few exceptions (as opposed to the 4 of 6 which tremendously skewed.

  8. ACL says

    @JB – What you are proposing is not enough. Teams will not willingly put together tougher schedules and the CIAC will not force them to because of the power of the conferences. Heck, the SCC purposely softens the schedule of the larger teams!

    The bottom line is that the CIAC continues to stumble around in the dark. High school football in this state will continue to be a joke to the rest of the region as long as the current CIAC leadership allows itself to be pushed around by the conferences.

    • JB says

      If T-day and the league title game were eliminated, the FCIAC would be forced to game the heck out of that result and schedule just like the other leagues. The top programs would rarely play each other to make sure they have a shot at the only prize left … a state playoff berth. For example, New Canaan would never play more than one of the big guys like Darien, Staples, Greenwich, St Joes or Ridgefield. Plus the FCIAC would eliminate the SCC cross-over games and put in a bye-week for everyone … and voilà, the FCIAC could produce two undefeated teams and up to four 1-loss teams most every year.

      Take away T-day and the league title game? … not to be too cynical, but folks need to be careful of what they wish for.

      • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

        No one wants to take away Thanksgiving Day *games.* Just not play them on Thanksgiving. In my case, the Saturday before.

        And, oh yes, dump the FCIAC SWC etc finals. Another tradition whose time has passed.

        • Just Sayin says

          Please don’t call them Thanksgiving Day games if they play them on a Saturday. Just call them games.

  9. Marcus Da Truth says

    The way this is going the BCS will be in CT. Sad. Bowl games will start being played now amongst those that don’t make it. TRUTH!!!

  10. JB says

    My view is that the regular season scheduling is too weak. Everything starts with making things more competitive every game. The district model would do that, but it appears DOA at the committee / league levels. But currently, too many leagues are just laying back gaming the schedule to get as many into the playoffs as possible. And this attitude of “we must have 32 teams make the playoffs” makes it appear like a bunch of bowl games … an exhibition season. Who the heck is going to be the LL titleholder this year? Size A or Size B? Ugh.

    So if the carrot doesn’t work, then use the stick. Dump the CIAC point system next season and use the CALPrep computer model … then watch league officials scramble to figure out how their best programs – yes, maybe even their “undefeated” – will have enough points to make the playoffs. Let’s use some toughness, this is football isn’t it? Beating a bunch of cupcakes to make the playoffs to then get blown-out by an 8 seed is just wrong. That is why CT has such a bad football reputation … every state is way tougher on its playoff qualifications.

    And let’s stop blaming the T-day tradition as the issue. Its not.

  11. Coach Lil B says

    How did a post about spring football participants get turned into playoff talk haha this will be the talk on every post this entire football season…..anywho, I agree with SPB for the most part, after a lot of thought I really like the idea of just playing the traditional Thanksgiving Games the weekend before like Hall/Conard do, still will get big crowds and the rivalry game with the added benefit of the playoffs getting quarterfinals and all deserving teams getting in (some pretenders, yes, but better than deserving teams being left out *I qualify deserving teams as one loss tops, 2+ losses and I don’t feel bad for you no matter the league*). I think this is the most equitable idea that benefits all sides. I also like the district model but I’m not gonna lie I do like preserving the conference rivalries so that’s a toss up to me that I think can go either way. Should be interesting to see what the outcome will be after this season

    • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

      Well, seeing as 2014 is the ‘lost season’ we’re already looking forward to 2015.

      I spent Wednesday morning at CIAC for their media summit and, taking off the reporter hat and donning my columnist one, I let fly a caffeine-fueled diatribe to CIAC associate executive director Dr. Steven Wysowski (who is gradually replacing Paul Hoey) on how, in my opinion, the ‘integrity of the game’ depends on the football committee, CIAC and principals and superintendents to get this thing right. A system that attempts to assuage all sides.

      I said my Weekend-Before-Thanksgiving regular season end was the most equitable way: though you lose the traditional end, you preserve the integrity of those rivalry games by getting it as close as possible to Thanksgiving, while reestablishing the three-round playoff. Of course, a few of my colleagues in attendance either said ‘no way’ or ‘good luck with that’ — which is basically where we are in this situation — and that’s just too bad.

      They’re going to take their sweet time figuring this out, which is good news because it shows they’re not taking this lightly. Wysowski said something to the effect that a decision will be made in ‘early fall.’

      My argument is that if Thanksgiving is — in essence — all about the money, then schools still will get comparable gates if they merely move rivalries to Saturday before. After all, they’re still rivalries and, unlike a model that preserves Thanksgiving as some sort of playoff intermission, they still have an impact on the regular season and playoff chases and not feel forced.

      I’ll also argue that if we do make Thanksgiving some sort of playoff intermission, then we’ve already devalued their importance. Of course, there’s an idea that they’d add a playoff modifier based on Thanksgiving results and reseed the semifinals. In that case, I’ll argue that idea only serves to bandage a severed limb with duct tape.


      • Coach Lil B says

        Yeah I agree with your points there about not making it a devalued game and keeping it still in regular season to maintain the significance and rival atmosphere (just a different day). I don’t like when people say the 2014 season is ‘lost’….okay there is 8 champions for a season…trust me the players don’t think its a ‘lost’ season especially the seniors…it is just as important a season and will be just as memorable as any for the players and coaches involved with their teams.

        • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

          I hear you, but we are — essentially — not deciding anything. Eight champs is more like NCAA Bowl Season and, from my standpoint, will be treated as such.

          • Coach Lil B says

            I obviously do agree that 8 champions is wayyy too many for CT football, but the decision was made and it will be changed after the season. I ideally like 4 champions with the quarterfinals but that is not the case for this season. Being a coach I just hate the term 2014 is a ‘lost’ season but understand why it is said on blogs etc. Hopefully the system will be properly adjusted for 2015

  12. CTone says

    There are between 10,000 and 30,000 reasons to keep T-Day games. And until somebody can show the AD’s those reasons to play the week before. T-day football ain’t going anywhere. NOBODY GIVES UP SURE MONEY. And playing on T-Day is sure money!!!

    • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

      You doth embellish too much. There is 1 reason.

      And, I can assure you, based on apparent attendance, Conard vs. Hall the Saturday before makes just as much as most Thanksgiving Day games. But let’s go ask Conard and Hall…

      • CTone says

        I find it hard to believe. That 2 teams playing on 11/22. Will make that same money playing on Thanksgiving. It’s impossible. Work, Younger Siblings activities and holiday travelers. Just to name a few will keep attendance down. Thanksgiving day football is an event. Playing on Saturday is just another Saturday.

        • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

          Yeah? Ever go to a Conard-Hall game?

          You also forget a majority of thanksgiving day games have little to no history, and weren’t even played on Thanksgiving until their conferences absorbed select schools that held it in high regard.

          Also, an exceptional amount are played Wednesday night. So much for tradition there.

          No, there are only a handful of games for which Thanksgiving means so much.

          But if you’re that adamant, then you can’t have a real playoff system. Can’t have both.

          • JB says

            Agreed – can’t have both. But always room for improvement – so please fix that darn point system, regardless. That is the issue holding back either an 8-team or 4-team playoff system. Having first round playoff games that threaten the regular season 50 point rule is more embarrassing than the rule itself.

          • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

            (sigh) You can’t fix the point system they way you want without systematically disenfranchising schools in conferences not named FCIAC SCC or CCC. And, no, telling those schools they have to switch leagues to justify it is not the avenue. Most are in leagues for reasons other than football.

            Once again, if you really want to espose equality you’re a District Model fan.

          • JB says

            Sean that is not a good argument, this is for the state playoffs not a bunch of birth-right bowl games where every league gets a trophy.

          • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

            We’ve gone over this a gazillion times before. What you’re suggesting is a hard-line approach that would, in effect, exclude everyone except the usual suspects. You basically saying NFA and Newtown, get out because your school districts don’t play in ‘legit’ leagues in which you don’t play schools of your size.

            Sure there are inequalities, but the fix is not by making the fringe leagues pay for their being fringe leagues (nor is it to force a team to beg the SCC/FCIAC/CCC just for the sake of football).

            If you really want equality, you want the district model in which you play teams of your size/caliber and get into the playoffs based strictly on record rather than points.

  13. JB says

    So we are forever doomed with the “bowl season model” to protect the fringe schools? Ugh, that is a downer.

  14. JB says

    OK, Sean, but I don’t see the solution. No one is giving up the T-day tradition and league title games, just so a few “fringe” schools can make it into states every year. Most likely we just go back to 6 divisions and 4-team playoffs.

    • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

      I’m going to throw this out there because you and I are not of the same mind on this topic: I don’t have any problem with NFA and Newtown playing in the Class LL playoffs. Sorry everyone. I like diversity and those best teams from the ‘fringe’ leagues getting to prove they belong rather than increasing the possibility of getting some 7-3 FCIAC school in. I want all the best teams from each league. Yes, that means even the best of the CSC.

      The only time when our opinions converge is when teams deliberately try to game the system by leaping into a weaker league. But even then I don’t blame them because, lookit some of the scheduling in the power leagues. SCCII vs SCC I? Yikes.

      Hence, I’m in favor of Districts to eliminate that problem once and for all.

  15. Coach Lil B says

    Hall/Conard game draws about as many fans as most other Thanksgiving rivalry games do even on the Saturday before Thanksgiving. I see this as a non issue due to this fact. People will show up for rivalry games regardless of the day (otherwise it aint a true rivalry and there isn’t much tradition behind it anyways). Can’t punish what you’re calling “fringe” schools because not every Scc/Fciac/Ccc makes it into playoffs. I coach at a school in what people are now calling one of the ‘power conferences’ and I think its unfair to the other leagues to change systems based on our perceived strength of schedule. Its high school football and league strength will change year to year due to “no recruiting” etc, this isn’t the FBS people. Yes there are common powers but there still is regular change throughout the state every year. Agree with SPB that District Model is best if people want a change, otherwise I feel system should stay as is playoff point ranking wise.

  16. JB says

    No T-day or league title game and a playoff point system that is biased against competitive scheduling? Count my vote in the District Model camp.

  17. UBilly says

    A few thoughts from someone who went to HS at a CCC – LL school that was penilized for playing some L and MM schools back in the day when only 2 teams qualified and am a parent of sons who played for an L school in the one of the two ‘monster” conferences and saw teams not qualify while other teams in “fringe” conferences with weak scheduling did get into the post season.

    1. At both schools, Thanksgiving games were an event – not just a football game. And this is whether it was played on T-Day or the Wednesday night before. Tons of kids are back from college and this is an unscripted way to meet up. Parents of graduated players come back to meet up with parents they see only at this game every year. It is a game, it is a social event and it is a party. IT IS MORE THAN JUST A RIVARY GAME! That is why AD’s do not want to lose this tradition – Money and Connections being made and renewed. The kids play in front of their largest crowd of the year and for most players throughout the state, it IS their final game of the year and football career. Thanksgiving Day/Eve games are a great way for most kids to end their seasons.

    2. Play-off point system. I like that the “fringe” schools get a chance to make the playoffs. I hate that the leagues sometimes set up CCCream-Puff schedules for certain teams when they have a large enough pool to never have an L team playing mostly M and S schools. Maybe tweek the formula slightly to reward teams that play 70% of their games against their division or higher to avoid some of the problems we had this past year.

    3. Top level teams not making the playoffs due to teams from “fringe” conferences making it or due to their conference being a true power-house that year: Lets keep the regular season important in football! (Unlike almost every other CIAC sport) There were years where we knew our team was “better” than a team that made states, but they didn’t play a schedule near to ours. TOUGH! We knew that to be the best, you have to beat the best! There are teams that win state championships, but everyone doubts them due to their schedule. Our teams goals are to not be a great team, but rather a great team from a great program. To be recognized as that, you need to beat the best throughout the gaunlet of a brutal regular season and then earn the right to compete in the State Playoff System, whatever form it is in at that time. Then win against any “team” that might come at you, and at the same time, cheer on the other teams from your league you just spent 10 weeks fighting against.

    If you don’t make the playoffs because of your schedule….get better! My boys would be the first to tell you certain years they did not EARN the privilage of playing for the Championship. This whether they were better than some teams that did get the chance or not. Give all the teams the chance to make states, power conferences or “fringe”. Just try to discourage some of the scheduling from conferences that helped some teams avoid other conference teams with similar size or pedigree. A tweeking to the point system, not a toss to only reward teams in power conferences.

    I know this year will be odd with muliple “State Champions” in the same class, but for the boys sake, lets cheer them on no matter what the CIAC finally ends up with.

  18. seth says

    some of you say things that make me believe that you think the schools create their own schedule. i hope im wrong but by some of the idiotic comments i guess its a possibility. can someone tell me a school that didnt make the playoffs last year because another school in a weaker division had a better record.

    • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

      Leagues make the schedules with the exception of one or two weeks so (depending on the year and the league’s size). For the most part teams’ schedules are stuck with how the league works.

      • seth says

        i know that but some of these people talk out of the rear. ill answer my own ? xmen and staples in ll and that is pretty much it. they both had 3 losses i think and you know what newtown deserved to be in. its not like x and staples had 1 loss and newtown bumped them out. this is a dumb argument

        • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

          And that game — along with the others — are the rare exception rather than the rule.

          • JB says

            Newtown got bounced in round 1 last year by the 4th best team in the FCIAC. Please. Newtown beat no one all season – schedule was a joke. Xavier would have been undefeated with Newtown’s schedule – easy. All of this talk about current CT playoff qualifications is a joke. Face it. Not one state in the nation doesn’t ding teams who play a weak, out of class schedule like Newtown. This bias against finding the best teams for the playoffs is what gives CT football such a bad reputation.

            No wonder the FCIAC views it’s title game as a bigger achievement than a divisional state title most years. To qualify, you have to win almost every game against the best teams in the state. Year-in and Year-out the best title game in the state is often the FCIAC title game.

            Could the FCIAC back out of the CIAC for football? Probably makes sense given the best competition is within the league versus even a district model which would weaken many team’s schedules and eliminate a hugely rich tradition of competition.

            The FCIAC should consider dropping out of the CIAC for football.

  19. fciac jr says

    Staples, Trumbull, Greenwich and Xavier were all better than Newtown and NFA. those 4 would have had the same record if they played the same schedule. Time to make a change on the point systems so the pretenders do not take up a spot from the true contenders.

    • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

      I absolutely loathe this line of thinking, so let me tell you guys why:


      FINAL SCORE: Bunnell 28, once-No. 1 Staples 26.

      Sorry, I don’t share the outrage. Everyone and every league deserves their shot.

      • seth says

        i agree. that argument is just the fciac and scc brats trying to show their muscles. sure the top schools in their league are better but to condemn a whole league is just dumb.

      • JB says

        It sure sounds like the CIAC has convinced leagues to drop T-day games in order to get back to real playoffs in 4 divisions. But if the point system doesn’t change, then we get the same outcome as the last 3 years (too many lop-sided LL matchups and teams like Foran last year who was boxed-out of M due to the SCC cross-over games). I think the other leagues are not going to step-up to the concept of the SCC/FCIAC “challenge games” – so that will die after this year is done.

        Given all the changes and no district model, why not expand the playoffs to 16 teams and start playoffs the Saturday before T-day? 16 teams in 4 divisions would eliminate some of the “bias” in the current point system (although, the tournament seeding for the brackets should be made by the coaches not the point system). Means moving “rivals weekend” back a week (so what). We get even more playoff football with a better slate of contenders. If certain leagues are against that, then you have to really start questioning their motives.

        • seth says

          well the swc and nvl did crossovers and the swc had the majority of the w’s. i know know they are small and dont really matter(sarcasm) but to say that no other leagues do it is just false. i know for a fact some of the schools wont back down from bigger schools.

      • Coach Lil B says

        100% agree with SPB on this one, there are numerous examples of the same kind throughout the years……stop talking about Xavier, a 7-3 team making playoffs that’s ridiculous (I watched them play and they weren’t nearly as good as they had been past three seasons). Teams from all conferences deserve a shot because you never can really say how good/bad a team is because of the conference they play in, not by a long shot

  20. Rob (OCEC) says

    So I have to address JB’s last rant: So the #4 team from the FCIAC, and only FCIAC team in the LL was able to edge such an embarrassing team such as Newtown 35-33. Okay, how did their game against the #2 team in the CCC Div. 1 West go? One of the most talked about conferences regarding soft schedules and poor post season performances, right? Southington Whooped your FCIAC Darling #4 45-0, and I think if the Cochran rule wasn’t a factor, it could have been more. Where were the “powerhouse” programs from the gold coast conference JB? Staples, Greenwich, Trumbull all absent? Do the private tuition schools rule the roost in Fairfield County? Is the problem that the likes of New Canaan and St. Joes take all the really good players? Class L and M, New Canaan and ST Joes did well winning their class, but if we look at St Joes Quarter Final, little Ledyard hung 49 on the Cadets, so they ran juggernaut through a weak class M, and no one has a good argument for that.

    So in response to your proposal to take the teams on the west coast of Connecticut and call your FCIAC championship the “End All” for your conference members; I say go ahead, Connecticut Football will be better with the FCIAC and what seems to be a attitude of “our way is the only way”.

    District model could solve a lot of bickering about unfair advantages in gaining playoff berths. If no one will look past the sanctimonious relationship with regular season football on the 4th Thursday in November, it will never happen. Enslavement of children to the almighty dollar and false idolism to some [bs] claim of tradition will continue to fester in football until clearer heads prevail.

    • seth says

      class m wasnt that weak. st joes was just that good and them and new c could probably beat anyone in the state. joes is a private school that recruits and new c is always top notch. one result of a game has no effect on whether a league sucks or not. even though i find the league argument very stupid, i am in support of more cross over games i think some of you would be surprised at the results. having really watched joes and class m obviously joes was the best but after that all the teams in the semis were pretty close and you can throw bethel in there as well. joes should man up and play up. just my opinion

  21. Brownie says

    The biggest crowds for thanksgiving games is usually the new Canaan vs. Darien game. Both of these schools could afford to move this game to the Saturday before thanksgiving

    • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

      Not to mention they’ve only played on Thanksgiving for 20 years.

      (No, kids. That’s not really a long time)

  22. JB says

    Rob(OCEC) – good by me, but it will never happen. There is no tradition in CT state playoff football. We seem to change it every year like a cheap suit. Why? Because it is all about making sure the “fringe” leagues have a chance to win a trophy … the term “protect the fringe’ is not in the FCIAC vocabulary – “survival of the fittest” is what the FCIAC is all about. The SCC is the same way.

    Even if the CIAC drops T-day (which sounds likely), the FCIAC hopefully will never drop its title game. District model is DOA from what I hear, so sounds like Saturday before T-day is “rivals weekend” and the FCIAC will hold its title game the weekend before that. No more Challenge Games with the SCC and the FCIAC will modify (soften) the regular season schedule to maximize state playoff spots. The SCC and FCIAC tried to lead the way with the well matched cross-over games, but the other leagues are just not strong enough to join and compete.

    • seth says

      this fringe league phrase now is really irritating me. why dont you just say that the only teams that should make the states is scc and fciac teams because that is what you are saying. to me that is stupid. just because they are bigger schools doesnt make them royalty. so what do you suggest for these so called fringe leagues just forfeit the season because their school isnt as big as the “big boys” please what a crock

    • Coach Lil B says

      The FCIAC and SCC are top heavy year in and year out (granted you could say that about most leagues I guess) but lets not act like these two leagues are always the best….the Ccc, Swc, Nvl, even Ecc have had years where their leagues were dominant…even Pequot with some dominant Hyde teams and very good Cromwell teams have made the Pequot strong certain years, Valley been very good too recently (key injuries have hurt them in the playoffs). Year in and year out you don’t know which conference will end up being the strongest at the end of the season so you can’t make preemptive decisions about conference strength before the season even starts

  23. Rob (OCEC) says

    I had a full page of comments written, the website told me to settle down and not post so fast. Guess that’s the universe telling me I’ve said enough.

    Playoff Football > Turkey Day regular season football

    I will have to agree to not agree with JB.

    Equity over tradition. If CALPreps is the answer, mandatory crossovers will be unmanageable for some teams. That will exclude some folks from the post season.

    • Sean Patrick BowleySean Patrick Bowley says

      Leagues are too big for mandatory crossovers, especially now that CIAC’s in process of dumping the 11-game schedule from future seasons.

      I mean, I guess you could tell the leagues to open spots, but then what’s the point of a league?

      Might as well just go districts if you want equality of schedules.

      • JB says

        If the mandate is ultimately to reduce the regular season to 8 games like Iowa recently did and maintain a decent amount of competition, the only way is via the district model and hopefully expand the playoffs to 16 teams (in 4 divisions). Not saying I like the outcome, but it seems like no other way possible if the ultimate goal is to decrease games state-wide by 30%. We’ll see if the CIAC can get it done.

          • JB says

            10 may be an interim step … the concussion crazies are driving the bus in the future.

          • JB says

            I am no expert on the matter – lots of noise out there, but the impact of these nationwide parent coalitions is powerful. I believe the stated goal from the parent concussion coalition is a 40% reduction in full contact – not sure how that gets measured in regards to practice, scrimmages and games.

  24. KPatakyPhoto says

    Pretty soon every team will get a participation Championship and each player will get their own certificate to hang on their wall that says “I played”.

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