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LHSAA votes to expand playoff split to other sports

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BATON ROUGE - On Friday, representatives from 346 school districts held a high-stakes vote regarding the future of playoffs for high school athletics in Louisiana.

Principals voted 182-120 to not only continue the select/nonselect playoff split adopted in 2013 for high school football, but to also expand it to basketball, baseball and softball starting in the 2016-2017 school year.

The expansion was one of several other options considered by the convention, including abolishing the split or switching to a system which would let schools compete in higher classifications if warranted.

A first vote Friday was delayed after a technical glitch prevented a handful of schools from being able to register their vote electronically. The convention considered a hand vote of the hundreds of schools in order to ensure the vote is correct, but settled on using mechanical clickers with a hand vote if the result was close.

The convention also overwhelmingly voted 258-23 in favor of a pay raise for officials at high school sporting events. It's been a contentious issue between referee organizations and the LHSAA, and Executive Director Eddie Bonnie acknowledged during the negotiations that Louisiana's referees were the second-lowest paid in the region at that time.


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