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OSSAA reopens football rankings window after skewed vote leaves Bixby third in district

OSSAA reopens football rankings window after skewed vote leaves Bixby third in district

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Bixby’s Braylin Presley carries the ball during the Spartans’ win at Carl Albert on Oct. 2. On Monday, the OSSAA opened the rankings window for coaches who missed the initial rankings period last weekend.

For coaches who forgot or failed to vote in the first high school football rankings over the weekend, the Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association is reopening the rankings window.

Only three of eight coaches voted in District 6AII-2, leaving Bixby, ranked No. 1 in statewide polls in the classification, third in the district — behind Choctaw and Booker T. Washington.

Coaches may rank until noon Wednesday to avoid being locked out of subsequent 24-hour rankings periods, set to begin at noon Friday and Nov. 6.

“If they don’t rank this time, then we’re gonna lock ‘em out,” OSSAA associate director Mike Whaley said.

The rankings are one method being used to assure proper postseason seeding within each district in a season marred by cancellations due to the coronavirus.

But if every coach in a district doesn’t vote, seeding easily can be skewed — like what happened in District 6AII-2.

Only Bixby, Bartlesville and Ponca City voted. Each coach is asked to rank the teams in his district from high to low and may not vote for his team. First-place votes are worth seven points, second-place votes are worth six points, and on down to one point for a seventh-place vote.

Bixby received first-place votes from Bartlesville and Ponca City, meaning a maximum of 14 points. But Choctaw and B.T. Washington received points from three coaches to finish with 19 and 16, respectively.

Bixby defeated Choctaw 24-13 on Oct. 9 and ends the regular season vs. B.T. Washington on Nov. 5. The Spartans, with 31 consecutive wins, haven’t lost since falling to Jenks in their 2018 season opener.

Coach rankings were introduced last week as an alternative to deciding district standings according to total wins and average marginal points. Schools voted in each district on which method they would use.

Choctaw and B.T. Washington have more district wins than Bixby, which has had two games canceled. Under the district-wins criteria, Choctaw would be district champ if it wins out.

“We text-voted in our district and chose rankings to fix this problem,” Bartlesville coach Jason Sport said. “For us, (the process of voting Bixby No. 1) was pretty easy.”

High school football: Class 6AII top 10 rankings for Week 9

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