The job of realignment is never an easy one. Monday, the powerful Western Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Conference, known as the WPIAL, announced its realignment for the 2020 and 2021 high school football seasons.
The bi-annual alignment is based on enrollment figures. Class 6A is for schools with more than 582 boys. Here are the rest of the classifications — 5A is 399-582 boys, 4A is 275-398 boys, 3A is 196-274 boys, 2A is 130-196 boys and 1A is 130 boys and below.
There are a couple of interesting moves. Let start at the top where Pine-Richland is moving down from Class 6A to 5A. The Rams have played in three of the four WPIAL 6A championship games since the state moved from four to six classifications in 2016.
There will only be eight teams in Class 6A, because Butler decided to drop-out of the league. Moving into 6A this year will be Baldwin, which has played the last two years at 5A.
Over the last month, there’s been lots of talk about Aliquippa being a 4A school over the next two seasons. The Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association bumped the Quips from 3A to 4A on its competitive formula that was introduced in 2018 to address a program’s success and takes into consideration the number of transfers a program has taken.
Aliquippa’s enrollment qualifies the Quips to be a 1A school, but the school chose to “play-up” two classifications over the last two years.
2020-21 WPIAL football alignment
Class 6A (8 teams)
Class 5A (18 teams)
Upper St. Clair
Class 4A (22 teams)
Class 3A (20 teams)
Class 2A (27 teams)
Shady Side Academy
Class A (24 teams)
Greensburg Central Catholic