Football On Even Playing Field With Realignment


Photo M. Hall

Bailey Adams, Sports Editor

After two years in what was dubbed “the district of death”, the Robinson football program finds themselves shifting again. On Monday afternoon, the FHSAA released the tentative football classifications (based on student enrollment) for 2015-2018, with the Knights being placed in Class 5A-10.

At the 20-day count in 2012, Robinson was one student above Class 5A, landing them in 6A as the smallest school in the class. Just days later, the school was under the cutoff for 6A, but the classes were finalized. The Knights struggled through their two seasons in the district of death with the likes of Armwood and Hillsborough. They won just eight games total after winning 12 in 2012, the year they advanced to the 5A state semifinals. Now they return for the next four seasons.

“We are where we feel we belong as a team,” said coach Shawn Taylor in a tweet on Monday afternoon. Joining the Knights in District 10 are the Jesuit Tigers, Jefferson Dragons, Spoto Spartans, Middleton Tigers, Lake Wales Highlanders and Tenoroc Titans.

Perhaps the most intriguing of the new district opponents is Jesuit, a long-time district rival prior to the last realignment. Between 2001 and 2012, the two schools met 14 times, with each earning three wins in their last six meetings. In 2012, Robinson picked up a 31-10 win at Jesuit.

With six other teams in the district, that leaves four games open for non-district opponents, one of which will be Plant. Now on what looks like a more even playing field, the Knights have their sights set on their first postseason appearance since 2012.