Cubs will log many miles in new 4-team District

February 5, 2018

Lengthy bus rides between the spread out communities of West Texas are as much a part of the Friday Night Lights as cheerleaders and marching bands.

But Brownfield Cub fans will drive as far as anyone in Texas for a district football game next fall, following Monday’s UIL District Re-alignment process, which saw the Cubs land in District 1-3A which extends to Tornillo, a border community just a stone’s throw from El Paso.

The Friday night game, set for the second week of District play is in fact in a different time zone and almost in a different country.
The small town is on the banks of the Rio Grande.

Brownfield made the extended drive to Tornillo during its 2016 season. When they visited here in 2017 with fewer than a dozen fans, Brownfield students and fans formed a human tunnel for the Tornillo team to enter the field in a gesture of good sportsmanship.

Google Maps estimates the drive time from Brownfield to Tornillo at five hours, nine minutes — more than double the drive time to Kermit, the next farthest opponent in the Cubs’ new district.

Also joining Brownfield in the new District 1-3A will be longtime rival Denver City.

It is the only 4-team district in the 3A Division 1 ranks in Texas and makes filling a schedule difficult as the Cubs will have only three District games.

Many at Thursday’s event questioned why Slaton was not included in District 1-3A, rather than heading north into District 2-3A, comprised of six teams.

That would have resulted in two 5-team districts, but head scratching is part of the realignment process every two years.

Jeff Smith, Cubs Head Coach and Athletic Director, told the Brownfield News following the realignment conference in Lubbock Thursday that he thinks realignment is a good process for a school district.

“I view change a positive factor and a good thing for our program,” he said. “We get to see some fresh faces and some new places and it just shakes things up, which I like.”

Brownfield, as was pre-determined in December, will compete at the 3A D1 level for the next biennium.

Smith said he is not familiar with all of the district opponents, but he looks forward to playing each of them.

“I’m going to have to research their program and learn about them,” he said.

The coach said pick-up games would fill out the schedule for junior varsity and below on the weeks that Brownfield and Tornillo meet.

The Cubs’ schedule will be as follows: Week 1 – Post, Week 2 – Slaton, Week 3 – Tahoka, Week 4 – Muleshoe, Week 5 – Shallowater,

Week 6 – San Angelo Lakeview, Week 7 – Seminole, Week 8 – Open, Week 9 – Denver City, Week 10 – Tornillo, Week 11 – Kermit.

Realignment was a different story for the Cubs basketball program, which finds itself in an eight-team district.

District 2-3A will consist of Brownfield, Abernathy, Denver City, Idalou, Littlefield, Roosevelt, Shallowater, and Slaton.

Cubs basketball head coach Steve Rhodes told the News an eight-team district is a challenge and will require conference play to begin prior to the Christmas break next year.

Baseball and Softball will most likely include the same district opponents as the basketball schedule.

UIL academics will be similar to the football district, but more information will be made available following a meeting of district administrators and coaches later this month.

Elsewhere in Terry County, local six-man football stadiums will again compete at the 1A level and both Wellman-Union and Meadow found themselves in a district together with Morton, Ropesville, and Whiteface.

W-U Head Coach Joseph Hood told the News that District 5-1A is going to be tough.

“You have some very strong programs there in Morton and Ropes and there’s always a challenge when you play Meadow,” he said. “It should be some great football in the fall.”

The UIL’s biennial realignment was a bit less stressful for a few coaches and school districts Monday, thanks to the December early release of some key numbers.

The UIL disclosed the range of enrollments that would comprise each classification in December. 

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Category: Updates