District 3 to expand football playoffs to 44 teams, begin in Week 10

(Carlisle) Sentinel (TNS)
  • District 3 is expanding its football playoffs from 32 teams to 44 teams.
  • The District 3 football playoffs will start in Week 10.
  • That means teams that wish to play 10 games must start their seasons in Week 0.

After two years playing with six classifications, District 3 is expanding its football playoff field from 32 teams to 44.

York HIgh's Khalid Dorsey is shown in action last season. The Bearcats qualified for the District 3 Class 5-A playoffs a season ago, when only eight 5-A teams made the district field. Next season, 14 teams will make the district 5-A field in football. YORK DISPATCH FILE PHOTO

The district posted its playoff fields for the next cycle of seasons: 2018-19 and 2019-20. And it includes more than a 30-percent increase in the number of football teams making the postseason.

The Reading Eagle reported that this will mean the postseason will begin in all six classifications in Week 10.

With the advent of Week 0 two seasons ago, that means teams that wish to play a full 10-game schedule now must start in Week 0 and compete without a bye week. Teams have an option to play nine games if they still want the bye.

With the expansion, 47 percent of the district's 93 teams will make the playoffs, in line with most of the other team sports.

If the new number of qualifiers had been in effect last season, only one York-Adams League team would've been added to the District 3 football field — Delone Catholic (8-2) in 2-A.

It also alters PIAA match-ups in several classifications, including 5-A and 6-A facing District 1 teams instead of District 7.

Here's how things will expand:

Class 6-A: Remains the same with eight teams.

Class 5-A: Sees the biggest increase, from eight teams to 14.

Class 4-A: Bumps up from eight to 10 teams.

Class 3-A: Increases from four to six schools.

Class 2-A: Doubles from two to four teams.

Class 1-A: Stands pat with two teams.

Football sees the most dramatic playoff changes in the next cycle but is not the only sport to get tweaked. Here is a breakdown of every sport, including current and future numbers where changes occur:

Girls' soccer: Class 1-A increases from eight to 10 teams. Class 4-A and 3-A remain at 16 and 2A stays with 10. These are the same numbers as boys soccer.

Girls' volleyball: Class 2-A increases from six to eight teams. Class 4-A and 3-A keep 16 teams and 1-A holds at eight.

Girls' team tennis: Class 3-A drops from 12 to eight teams, while 2-A keeps eight.

Boys' basketball: Only 3-A changes, bumping up from six to eight. The rest remaining the same: 6-A with 12, 5-A with 16, 4-A with 10, 2-A with four and 1-A with 10.

Team wrestling: Class 2-A adds four to now have 12 teams, with 3-A standing pat with 16.

Softball: Class 2-A jumps from four to six teams. The rest stay the same: 6-A with 10, 5-A with 16, 4-A with 10, 3-A with six and 1-A with two.

Girls' lacrosse: Class 3-A adds two teams to reach 12, with 2-A staying at that number.

Boys' lacrosse: Sees the most change outside football, with 3-A adding four teams and 2-A dropping a pair of teams. Both classifications now have 12 playoff teams.

Boys' volleyball: Class 2-A adds two teams, totaling 12. Class 3-A stays with 14.

Boys' team tennis: Class 3-A drops from 12 to eight teams, matching 2-A's total.

Sports with no changes: Boys soccer (stays at 52 teams), field hockey (42 teams), girls' basketball (58 teams) and baseball (50 teams).