Highland Park will move back down to Class 5A beginning next fall. This much we know. The rest of the details will be filled in when UIL reveals the identity of HP’s district opponents as part of the biennial realignment process at 9 a.m. Monday.
The Scots have spent the past two seasons competing in Class 6A, which is the largest classification in the state. They’ve had some success in postseason competition, most notably in girls soccer and tennis, despite being one of the smallest schools in 6A in terms of enrollment.
Now, thanks to new enrollment cutoffs, HP will drop back down to the classification (formerly 4A) in which — as one of the largest schools in the state — it was a powerhouse for more than two decades before jumping two years ago.
While the drop to 4A should be generally favorable in terms of competition level, it also likely will lead to more travel. A projection from the reliable folks at The Old Coach has the Scots fitting into a geographically brutal district with Denison, Greenville, Lovejoy, McKinney North, Royse City, Sherman, and Wylie East.
When HP was most recently at the 4A level from 2012 to 2014, it competed alongside two Mesquite schools, two Carrollton schools, two Forney schools, and Terrell.
It’s possible the Scots could reunite with some of those schools, or be combined with other programs to the north such as Little Elm, The Colony, or Prosper. If the Scots are sent to the south, they might be grouped with Lancaster, Red Oak, or Waxahachie. It’s all speculation for now.
Whatever the new scenario might be, it will affect sports including football, volleyball, basketball, baseball, softball, tennis, golf, and track and field. Other UIL sports such as soccer, wrestling, and swimming have separate district alignments that may or may not overlap. Those will be announced later this spring.