UIL: Royal-Me­mo­rial re­ceives back­ing for state ti­tle games

Austin American-Statesman - - SPORTS -

Con­tin­ued from C clas­si­fi­ca­tion state cham­pi­onship games be­tween Re­liant Sta­dium in Hous­ton, the Alam­od­ome in San An­to­nio and Cow­boys Sta­dium. UIL di­rec­tor Charles Bre­i­thaupt said Royal-Me­mo­rial Sta­dium should be added to the list.

West­lake and three-time de­fend­ing state 4A cham­pion Lake Travis will kick off the reg­u­lar sea­son Aug. 28 at Royal-Me­mo­rial Sta­dium. A year ago, the Cha­parrals reached the 5A, Di­vi­sion I state-ti­tle game.

“It’s go­ing to feel like a play­off at­mos­phere,” said Lake Travis’ first-year coach, Hank Carter. The Cava­liers and Cha­parrals have a two-year agree­ment to open the sea­son at Royal-Me­mo­rial Sta­dium, Carter said.

Carter re­called the Cava­liers fac­ing Killeen in a post­sea­son game at Royal-Me­mo­rial two years ago, and play­ers from both teams slipped on wet and choppy grass. The uni­ver­sity has since in­stalled Field­Turf, an ar­ti­fi­cial sur­face that grants bet­ter trac­tion.

At­tract­ing state cham­pi­onship games to Austin was one rea­son Texas switched from grass to Field­Turf, Brown said. In other con­ven­tion news:

The UIL might be ex­panded within two years to in­clude a Class 6A, Bre­i­thaupt said.

The pos­si­ble change will be pre­sented to state su­per­in­ten­dents in a sur­vey in Septem­ber, and the sur­vey re­sults will be taken to the UIL Leg­isla­tive Coun­cil in Oc­to­ber. If the coun­cil agrees to the plan, the state could have six classes for the next re­align­ment shift in 2012.

The ad­di­tion of a Class 6A would nar­row the en­roll­ment gap for all clas­si­fi­ca­tions — par­tic­u­larly in 5A. For ex­am­ple, Plano East has a stu­dent en­roll­ment of 6,171 and Allen 5,049 while West­lake to­tals 2,482 and An­der­son 1,977.

Cre­at­ing a Class 6A would al­low four teams from ev­ery district in each UIL clas­si­fi­ca­tion to reach the play­offs, Bre­i­thaupt said. Right now, only the 5A and 4A clas­si­fi­ca­tions have four teams ad­vance from each district.

De­trac­tors of the plan say that cre­at­ing a Class 6A will cre­ate travel night­mares for some schools. As an ex­am­ple, Bre­i­thaupt said, El Paso schools el­e­vated to 6A might have to travel 250 miles to Odessa for district games.

Class 5A has been the state’s largest clas­si­fi­ca­tion since 1980.

Ran­dom steroid test­ing of ath­letes com­pet­ing in UIL sports will con­tinue in the up­com­ing aca­demic year, but on a smaller scale. The Texas Ed­u­ca­tion Agency, which al­lot­ted $1 mil­lion for tests last year, will re­ceive $750,000 for the pro­gram this school year.

UIL ath­letic di­rec­tor Cliff Oden­wald said steroid test­ing had been a de­ter­rent to young peo­ple us­ing steroids. The fall test­ing re­port re­leased by the UIL in 2009 listed two high school ath­letes as test­ing pos­i­tive for steroids from a group of 3,133 stu­dents tested.

Stu­dents from 193 schools were se­lected for the tests, 1,969 boys from 11 sports and 1,164 girls from 10 sports. The sports with the most stu­dents tested were foot­ball for boys (687) and volleyball for girls (170).

Tyson Brower, a safety from West­wood, has been added to the North team’s ros­ter for tonight’s an­nual THSCA All-Star Foot­ball Game at the Alam­od­ome. He re­places New­man Smith safety Randall Joyner.

Kick­off is set for 7:30 p.m.

Al­berto Martínez

UIL di­rec­tor Charles Bre­i­thaupt said Mon­day that Royal-Me­mo­rial Sta­dium should be in­cluded in a state-ti­tle game ro­ta­tion.

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