Apr 19, 2012
Green Hope and Panther Creek High Schools will have one final chance to appeal their new conference assignment to the N.C. High School Athletic Association.
The two schools will go before the NCHSAA Board of Directors on May 1. The hearing was granted by the NCHSAA after the schools filed procedural appeals regarding the realignment process, Green Hope Athletic Director Wayne Bragg confirmed.
A procedural appeal can be filed with the NCHSAA when a member school believes there was an error in a specific process.
Bragg could not comment on the specifics of the appeal, only confirming that it involved realignment.
In the realignment plan, East Chapel Hill and Southern Durham High Schools will drop from the 4-A Class to the 3-A Class, leaving just five teams in the PAC 6 Conference. NCHSAA conferences are made up of at least six teams, so the NCHSAA Realignment Committee moved Green Hope and Panther Creek to the PAC 6.
Currently, Green Hope and Panther Creek are members of the Tri-Nine Conference along with Apex, Athens Drive, Cary, Fuquay-Varina, Holly Springs, Lee County and Middle Creek.
"We just want to stay in our community. It's one thing to take teams in a certain county and divide them up, but to take teams in the same city and divide them up is wrong," Bragg said. "All these kids grew up playing together and now you're separating them."
Bragg, who served as an assistant football coach at Northern Durham High School under Gary Merrill several years ago, said it has nothing to do with not wanting to play teams in the PAC 6. He pointed out that almost every team at Green Hope plays PAC 6 teams in the non-conference season already.
"A lot of people are looking at it as a Cary-Durham thing. I got my start in Durham, so it has nothing to do with that," said Bragg. "All these kids grew up playing together and now you're separating them. It's about staying in our community."
After the Board of Directors hears the appeal they will vote on whether or not to move Green Hope and Panther Creek back to the Tri-Nine or to keep them in the PAC 6.
The new conferences will go into place for the 2013-2014 school year.