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Published January 22, 2014, 10:01 PM

Minnesota State High School League to look at controversial issues

Fargo, N.D. (WDAY TV) -Minnesota high school football could change dramatically tomorrow when the State High School League will vote on two measures. One that is a short term issue, the other, a problem that's been bugging teams for a long team.

By: WDAY Staff Reports , WDAY

Fargo, N.D. (WDAY TV) -Minnesota high school football could change dramatically tomorrow when the State High School League will vote on two measures. One that is a short term issue, the other, a problem that's been bugging teams for a long team.

Here's what's on the agenda tomorrow; first because construction on the new Vikings stadium won't be completed, the 2015 Prep Bowl will be held outside at TC Bank Stadium in mid-November, two weeks earlier than the usual Thanksgiving weekend, because the Gophers are at home.

That means the high school league has to make a decision, either start the season a week earlier than normal, with games starting Aug. 22 or cut the playoff field to just four teams per section, which has some coaches on each side of the fence.

Bryan Strand, Barnesville head coach: “It's hot in August this past year, had practices off because of the heat or adapt the practice schedule, so if they're looking at moving it up I would say eight games, top four teams make it and if we happen to be the five seed one of those years, you should have won more games.”

Dave Haugen, Pelican Rapids head coach: “If we keep our schedule the way is everyone deserves eight games and a shot in the playoffs so I can't speak for my family with vacation time, but let's move it up and play everything as is.”

That's not even the most debated topic in the state. The league is trying to adapt district scheduling to make sure each team plays eight games, and in this plan, teams are placed in pods based on geography and population.

Kevin Merkle, MSHSL associate director: “There's a minority of schools that have scheduling issues in football and majority we don't have issues, we're ok, why have a plan that changes scheduling for everybody if there's a problem with the minority, but the minority doesn't go away.”

Strand: “I think if they would have scheduling sections and don't it that way, play seven games out of our eight game sections and then get a rivalry game, you'd be just fine.”

Haugen: “What I hope when it's said and done is to have Frazee and Barnesville's on there; If we end up on edge of boundary and going to Benson and Holdingford, there's not a big draw for that in terms of public's interest.”

Merkle did tell me a decision on scheduling may be tabled tomorrow; meaning changes likely couldn't take place until 2016.

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