View From the Press Box: Dion Clisso 7/28
By Dion Clisso PrepsKC Managing Editor
Well here we sit just one week away from the start of practice in Missouri. If it seems early to you don’t worry it is.
The rule changes put into place this year by the Missouri State High School Activities Association moved the start of football up to the first week of August. This was done for two reasons. First it allows more time for heat acclimation for athletes and second it moves all postseason games to a one game a week format.
The postseason format means that Classes 1-5 will no longer play a Wednesday, Monday, Saturday stretch for games 11, 12 and 13. It makes the season a true 15 week schedule from week No. 1 to the state championship game.
I was a fan of the old format because it meant more football in a short amount of time. As a football junkie it was fun to have games every four or five days in a two-week stretch. While it is fun it is busy at the same time. In the grand scheme of things it allows the players more recovery time and keeps long trips to Friday nights or Saturday mornings which is better for players when it comes to a normal routine.
The only downside is Class 6 will now have an off week between the semifinals and championship round. Good for those two teams that make it that far on one hand. Players get to rest and get ready for the game. Bad on the other hand because an extra week means no Class 6 football for two weeks.
Like I said I’m a fan of the old way but like most things the football postseason format changes every once in a while so I am used to that.
The early start will hopefully have positive effects for the players in terms of heat acclimation but starting games in the third week of August means we could be playing a lot of games later or on Saturday morning if we get a stretch of hot weather. It’s August in Missouri and while we have had a relatively mild summer this year that doesn’t mean we won’t run into a patch of 100 degree plus weather in the first few weeks of the regular season.
Football has always started in the heat and ended in the cold so that’s nothing new. With the season starting earlier we just may find that heat to be pretty brutal the first few weeks.
Either way Monday morning football is back starting in Missouri with Kansas just two weeks behind. I don’t know about you but I can’t wait.
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