COLUMBUS — The Ohio High School Athletic Association (OHSAA) has announced it’s football regions and playoffs format, as well as the schedule for the upcoming 2017 season.
The new regions and playoffs format were approved last Thursday by the OHSAA Board of Directors at their June meeting as part of the 2017 football tournament regulations. New divisions were announced on April 6.
One big chance for the upcoming year is that all playoff games during the first four rounds will be played on Friday nights. Also announced was the format for the state championship games, which will be played at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton November 30 through December 2.
Tim Streid, Director of Communications for the OHSAA sent out a release that included the following: “For a few years now we have studied the possibility of moving all playoff games to Friday nights for the first four rounds,” OHSAA Assistant Commissioner Beau Rugg said. “Due to so many more college football games being played on Saturday nights, attendance at our Saturday playoff games has steadily declined, and more potential playoff sites have said they cannot host games on Saturdays. We now have enough playoff sites to handle all the games on one night, and the football coaches association was in support of this change, too, because teams will get to stay on their normal weekly schedule of playing on Friday night.”
You can view the new region and division assignments by visiting: http://www.ohsaa.org/Sports-Tournaments/Football/Football-2017.
Teams throughout Ohio will begin practice on Monday July 31 with a mandatory five-day acclimatization period. Regular season action is set to begin on Monday August 21. There are 719 teams throughout Ohio set to play football this season. Weekly computer point releases begin on Tuesday September 19. This process determines how teams rank in their respective divisions in the state. Gridiron play for the regular season ends on Saturday October 28 and the fina computer points and playoff qualifiers will be announced the following day. In total, there will be 224 qualifiers.
Regional quarterfinals will begin on Friday November 3 and will be played at the higher seeded teams’ home field. After those 112 games conclude, the regional semi-finals will take place the following Friday at neutral sites. The field then will be narrowed to 56 remaining teams and the regional finals will take place on November 17, also at neutral sites to determine what teams advance to the state semi-finals on November 24. All regional football action will be played at 7:30 pm.
As previously mentioned, the state championship games for all divisions will be played at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton. The official championship game time assignments will be announced on Saturday November 25.