DES MOINES, Iowa – Following Thursday’s regular meeting of the IHSAA Board of Control, district and group assignments for the 2021 and 2022 football seasons are now available.

The 2021 football season will be the first with a new seventh classification (Class 5A), approved in January by the Board of Control to reduce the disparity in enrollment in the IHSAA’s largest class of football, and to increase the number of participating teams and student-athletes in the postseason across all classes. Following the one-year assignments in 2020, districts and Class 5A groups are effective for a two-year cycle.

Class 5A’s group and success model format is based on information outlined in February 2020, before COVID-19 related changes were made in July to the IHSAA’s football scheduling and postseason.

Classifications, districts and groups, football classification formats, and success model information is below.

2021-22 ASSIGNMENTS

Atlantic Bottling

 

 

2021-22 FORMAT & PLAYOFF QUALIFYING

Class 5A
  • Teams: 36
  • Groups: 6
  • Teams Per Group: 6
  • Playoff Qualifiers: 16
  • At-Large Berths: 16, RPI
  • Regular Season Games (Per Team): 9
  • Group Games (Per Team): 4
  • Assigned Games (Per Team): 1
  • Non-Group Games (Per Team): 4

 

Class 4A
  • Teams: 36
  • Districts: 6
  • Teams Per District: 6
  • Playoff Qualifiers: 16
  • Automatic Qualifiers: 12, top two per district
  • At-Large Berths: 4, RPI
  • Regular Season Games (Per Team): 9
  • District Games (Per Team): 5
  • Non-District Games (Per Team): 4

 

Class 3A
  • Teams: 36
  • Districts: 6
  • Teams Per District: 6
  • Playoff Qualifiers: 16
  • Automatic Qualifiers: 12, top two per district
  • At-Large Berths: 4, RPI
  • Regular Season Games (Per Team): 9
  • District Games (Per Team): 5
  • Non-District Games (Per Team): 4

 

Class 2A
  • Teams: 48
  • Districts: 8
  • Teams Per District: 6
  • Playoff Qualifiers: 32
  • Automatic Qualifiers: 32, top four per district
  • At-Large Berths: 0, no RPI
  • Regular Season Games (Per Team): 8
  • District Games (Per Team): 5
  • Non-District Games (Per Team): 3
Class 1A
  • Teams: 48
  • Districts: 8
  • Teams Per District: 6
  • Playoff Qualifiers: 32
  • Automatic Qualifiers: 32, top four per district
  • At-Large Berths: 0, no RPI
  • Regular Season Games (Per Team): 8
  • District Games (Per Team): 5
  • Non-District Games (Per Team): 3

 

Class A
  • Teams: 56
  • Districts: 8
  • Teams Per District: 7
  • Playoff Qualifiers: 32
  • Automatic Qualifiers: 32, top four per district
  • At-Large Berths: 0, no RPI
  • Regular Season Games (Per Team): 8
  • District Games (Per Team): 6
  • Non-District Games (Per Team): 2

 

Eight-Player
  • Teams: 72
  • Districts: 10
  • Teams Per District: 8 with 7 / 2 with 8
  • Playoff Qualifiers: 32
  • Automatic Qualifiers: 30, top three per district
  • At-Large Berths: 2, 17-point differential in district
  • Regular Season Games (Per Team): 8
  • District Games (Per Team): 6 / 7
  • Non-District Games (Per Team): 2 / 1

 

More Information…

 

  • Week 1 of the 2021 football season is scheduled to begin Thursday, Aug. 26.
  • Priority lists for non-district opponents will be available for member schools on Wednesday, March 17.
  • Varsity football schedules will continue to be compiled and created by the IHSAA for this two-year cycle.
  • Teams in 2A, 1A, A, and 8P will be permitted to play a ninth regular season contest should they not qualify for the postseason.
  • Schedules for the 2021-22 seasons will be released in April.

 

Class 5A Success Model Schedule

  • The success model used for Class 5A was designed with the intent of adding competitive games to regular season scheduling of the largest-school class. It measures a football program’s: a) Three years (2017-19) of Ratings Percentage Index; b) Four years (2017-20) of playoff success.
  • The model used ranking within the RPI and ranking of “points” in playoff success (5 for championship, 4 for runner-up, 3 for semifinal appearance, 2 for quarterfinal appearance, and 1 for playoff appearance).
  • Teams are tiered by their ranking within the model. Tier 1 is teams ranked #1-6, Tier 2 is teams ranked #7-12, Tier 3 is teams ranked #13-18, Tier 4 is teams ranked #19-24, Tier 5 is teams ranked #25-30, and Tier 6 is teams ranked #31-36.
  • Every group contains a team from within each tier. Group schedules are designed for teams to play similarly tiered teams. Unlike district play, group play is not round robin.
  • In addition to group games arranged by tiers, Class 5A teams will play one “assigned game” against teams from similar tiers of other groups.
  • In the group format, there are no district champions or group champions. All 16 playoff qualifying spots will be considered at-large through RPI