Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

February 20, 2014

UIL keeps Ennis in 16-5A for football; moves Lions to 14-5A for rest of sports

Jay Neal
Jacksonville Daily Progress

ENNIS —

Ennis High School won one and lost one Thursday when the school went before the University Interscholastic League's appeals committee in Austin to argue its placement in the newly minted District 16-5A, which includes Corsicana, Jacksonville, John Tyler, Lindale, Lufkin, Nacogdoches and Whitehouse.

According to a report in The Ennis Daily News, Ennis officials were successful in getting the Lions moved into District 14-5A for all sports and activities other than football.

Ennis will remain in District 16-5A for football for the 2014-15 and 2015-16 school terms.

District 14-5A is much closer to Ennis geographically than the East Texas-centered District 16-5A.

The Lions will be joining Arlington Seguin, Lancaster, Mansfield Lake Ridge, Mansfield Legacy, Mansfield Summit, Mansfield Timberview, Red Oak and Waxahachie in District 14-5A.

“I think (possibly) because the rest of the teams in 16-5A already had their football schedules made, that the UIL took that into account when deciding to leave Ennis in the district,” Jacksonville athletic director/head football coach, Chris Taber, said. “It would have really put the other seven schools in a bind had Ennis been moved to another district for football too.

“My opinion is that it makes more sense to keep a school in the same district for football as well as for the other sports than to have one school playing in a different district for different sports.”

Taber said that the loss of Ennis would not adversely affect Jacksonville's other sports, such as boys/girls basketball, baseball and tennis.

“We'll have one less team competing for a playoff spot in the other sports, with Ennis leaving,” Taber said.

According to the newspaper account, the UIL did not provide Ennis with a reason as to why the appeals committee allowed the Lions to change leagues in all sports other than football.