CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — With UIL realignment comes teams in new districts facing new opponents.
Flour Bluff and Gregory-Portland football teams know each other well, having previously played in the same district together with most of the CCISD, and the Victoria ISD schools, in Division I's 15-5A.
On realignment day, the two football coaches learned they dropped to Class 5A-II, and will now be in a district with Brownsville Porter, Edcouch-Elsa, Mercedes, and Pharr Valley View; schools in the Rio Grande Valley.
“We’re excited," said Flour Bluff head coach Chris Steinbruck. "We’ve got a new district, new teams, some we’ve never played before. We’re excited about the challenge."
Without playing as many local schools in district, the two teams will have to travel more for games, but G-P coach Brent Davis is not worried about the travel.
“We’re trying to localize the non-district games, so we kind of even it out,” he said. “You’re talking two or three trips a year that you’re going to have to go to the Valley.”
Steinbruck said he is also not worried about the travel, and dropping down to Division II will be good for the team competitively.
“We felt like it was something we needed to do, to stay and play with schools around our size that are the same size, instead of opting up and playing with schools that are bigger than us,” he said.
Another Coastal Bend team in a similar district to Flour Bluff and G-P is Bishop. The Badgers are moving up from Class 3A-I to Class 4A-II, moving from a district that featured teams such as London, San Diego, and Falfurrias to one that consists of Port Isabel, Raymondville, and Rio Grande City Grulla; all Valley schools.
Badgers coach Louie Rodriguez said he’s not worried about the travel. In fact, he welcomes it.
“Travel, for us, is nothing,” he said. “We like the travel, we get the mentality with the kids that we have a SWAT team mentality; we go, we see, we conquer, we get out.”
For a full list of conference realignments, including other sports, visit the UIL website.