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AHSFHS Article Series

   The best of the best in Alabama High   
  School Football over the past 100 seasons.

Region and Area Records

       Alabama High School Football Regional Alignments

 In 1974 the AHSAA introduced the first format for Regional and Area play for high school football teams in Alabama. In the past with the complicated playoff structure a football team had to go almost unbeaten to qualify for the playoffs. This left many good football teams that suffered an early season loss out of the playoff picture.

    The AHSAA divided its schools in all four classifications into regions, with the region winner being determined by wins and losses with other football teams in that region. All teams were required to play every team in their region or area. If they did not play every team in their region games were designated to give each team an equal number of games. The coaches of the region would vote on the designated games for each team. The first year many teams played designated games with some teams having as many a four.

    The football playoffs were structured with four rounds for each classification to determine a champion. Now a team would qualify for the playoffs on the field not through a complicated points system or poll.  

     All this brought new meaning to high school football in the state. Teams would create new rivalries over the years and be forced to play teams they had avoided in the past.

    With the new regional alignment came a new sudden death overtime system to be used in region games and playoffs.  Previously a penetration method had been used to decide playoff victories that proved to be controversial. The sudden death overtime period has changed little over the years and remains the form of deciding games that are tied at the end of regulation.

    Another change would occur in 1984 with the football teams dividing into six classification and sixteen Areas. In 2014, the AHSAA added a seventh classification to the mix with the top 32 teams in enrollment joining the group. Over the years the AHSAA has gone between areas and regions and even a combination of both to arrive with the format they have today of seven classification with eight regions in each classification.



Great Moments in Alabama High School Football History

Ken Stabler, Bart Starr, Ozzie Newsome, John Stallworth, John Hannah and Buck Buchanan are all members of the NFL Hall of Fame and played high school football in Alabama.