NIAA plan may bring 5A league to football | RecordCourier.com

NIAA plan may bring 5A league to football

A new statewide playoff structure — and slightly revised Sierra League schedule — awaits the Douglas High football team for its 2018 season if a realignment plan is approved by the Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association Board of Control in January.

The plan moved forward after approval by the NIAA's fall 2018-spring 2020 cycle realignment committee last Friday. Final approval is subject to a vote by the board of control at its meeting on Jan. 17-18 in Reno.

Douglas coach Ernie Monfiletto, for one, is excited to see the proposal move forward.

"I think it's exciting that we're fortunate enough to have the opportunity to go where we belong," said Monfiletto, who has been at Douglas since 1996. "I think that benefits everyone in the North to now have a competitive opportunity to play for a state championship."

The committee is recommending the creation of a new Class 5A for football starting next fall. Twenty-six schools are listed for the new Class 4A.

The proposed 5A would include Arbor View, Canyon Springs, Centennial, Faith Lutheran, Las Vegas, Legacy, Basic, Bishop Gorman, Coronado, Foothill, Green Valley and Liberty. Gorman recently won its ninth straight state large schools football championship.

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"Any time you have one school winning nine straight championships, something is skewed," Monfiletto said.

He went on to look at some of Gorman's recent championship game scores — 48-7 over Reed this year, 84-8 over Liberty in 2016, 62-21 over Liberty in 2015 and 70-28 over Reed in 2014.

"Now, those 4A schools are going to have a competitive opportunity," Monfiletto said. "And the schools left in the 4A are great schools."

Desert Pines will move up after winning 3A state titles with talented teams the last two years.

"One of those Desert Pines kids (Tony Fields II), his dad played for me when I was coaching at Green Valley (Henderson in the 1990s)," Monfiletto said. "That kid is now playing as a freshman (linebacker) and having a good year at the University of Arizona."

The proposed Northern 4A will include six schools in the Sierra League and five in the High Desert League.

The High Desert League will consist of Reno, McQueen, Hug, Reed and Spanish Springs, with North Valleys set to drop down to the 3A.

The Sierra League will continue to consist of Douglas, Carson, Galena, Bishop Manogue and Damonte Ranch, with Wooster returning to the league after moving to the Northern 3A in 2010.

"We're excited to have six schools in our league again," Monfiletto said. "(Coach) Bo Sellers does a good job at Wooster. They will be competitive."

Looking ahead, Monfiletto said he is already looking forward to the Tigers' 2018 season, which is scheduled to kick off on Aug. 31 with a game on the road against the Union Mine Diamondbacks in El Dorado, Calif. (Placerville area).

Douglas is coming off a 2-8 season.

"I'm just looking at what we can do to get better," Monfiletto said.

Looking at the small schools, the realignment proposal calls for a new four-division format for the Class 1A 8-man football alignment. The proposal calls for a six-school West division with Sierra Lutheran, Whittell, Coleville, Excel Christian, Pyramid Lake and Virginia City. Meanwhile, Smith Valley and Mineral County would move into a new Central division.

Proposed Football Alignments

Class 5A

Arbor View, Canyon Springs, Centennial, Faith Lutheran, Las Vegas, Legacy, Basic, Bishop Gorman, Coronado, Foothill, Green Valley, Liberty.

Class 4A

North: Bishop Manogue, Carson, Damonte Ranch, Douglas, Galena, Wooster, Hug, McQueen, Reed, Reno, Spanish Springs.

South: Bonanza, Cimarron-Memorial, Desert Pines, Eldorado, Mojave, Palo Verde, Shadow Ridge, Chaparral, Clark, Desert Oasis, Durango, Sierra Vista, Silverado, Spring Valley, Valley.

Class 3A

North: Churchill County, Dayton, Elko, Fernley, Lowry, North Valleys, South Tahoe, Sparks, Spring Creek, Truckee.

South: Boulder City, Cheyenne, Del Sol, Democracy Prep, Moapa Valley, Pahrump Valley, Rancho, Sunrise Mountain, Virgin Valley, Western.

Class 2A

North: Battle Mountain, Coral Academy-Reno, Incline, North Tahoe, Pershing County, Silver Stage, West Wendover, White Pine, Yerington.

South: Adelson, Calvary Chapel, Lake Mead, Laughlin, Lincoln County, The Meadows, Mountain View, Needles (charter school to be announced).

Class 1A

West: Coleville, Excel Christian, Pyramid Lake, Sierra Lutheran, Virginia City, Whittell.

East: Carlin, Eureka Independence, McDermitt, Owyhee, Wells.

Central: Beatty, Mineral County, Round Mountain, Smith Valley, Tonopah.

South: Beaver Dam, Green Valley Christian, Indian Springs, Pahranagat Valley, Sandy Valley, Spring Mountain.