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High School Sports Blog

The latest news and analysis on high-school sports around the Seattle area

May 1, 2011 at 5:45 PM

Does Oregon have the answer to our football playoff system?

Should Washington follow Oregon’s suit when it comes to seeding high-school football teams into the state playoffs?

That’s a possibility discussed today (Sunday) at an informal meeting between members of Washington State Football Coaches Association committe and John Miller, assistant executive director of the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association who oversees football.

“We’re going to look into that,” said Bob Bourgette, the WSFCA president who is athletic director and head football coach at Kennedy Catholic, where the meeting between the 15 people took place.

The WSFCA is interested in finding ways to avoid first-round matchups between the state’s top teams, as has happened in the past based on the current bracketing system. One possibility would be adopting the Rating Percentage Index (RPI) used by the Oregon School Activities Association.

You can learn more about Oregon’s RPI here. Basically, three things are factored into the post-season seeding: a team’s weighted winning percentage (25%), a team’s opponents’ winning percentage (50%) and a team’s opponents’ oppenents’ winning percentage (25%).

Bourgette said Jamie Plenkovich from Ferndale will be checking into the pros and cons of Oregon’s system and share the information with committee members via e-mail by May 11.

The WIAA Executive Board would have to approve any recommendations and Bourgette stressed that no changes would be made for the 2011 season.

“Obviously, nothing’s going to happen next season,” he said. “But we have a full year to look at this.”

Bourgette said it’s clear there are no easy answers, but that the WSFCA is committed to pursuing options.

“This is not going to end,” he said. “We want to see what we can come up with . . . If we can come up with that magic formula, great.”

Bourgette said Miller was very informative and receptive.

“He had great input,” he said.

Miller explained some of the playoff systems in other states and in comparison Washington’s is “pretty good,” Bourgette said.

“It was really a positive meeting,” he added. “But did we come up with anything? No.”

But the coaches don’t plan to give up.

“If we can come up with something, we’re going to find a way,” Bourgette said.

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