For most of the 2000's, the Brookfield football program was in Division V of the Ohio High School Athletic Conference.
In 2010, the Warriors moved up to D-IV. Now, they're in Division VI.
"Pretty wild," coach Randy Clark said.
As part of its regional reallignment every two years, the OHSAA threw in a new loop for 2013 - a seventh division has been added. Since 1994, there have been six divisions. McDonald, actually, was involved in the first D-VI state title game when it fell to St. Henry, 21-7.
"I knew everything was going to be reconfigured," Clark said, "but I figured we'd be in at least Division V. Between our incoming freshman and our new sophomores, though, we'll have only 80 kids."
Brookfield graduated a large senior class, Clark noted, that included football stars Jeremy Quinlan, Jimmy Quinlan, Ryan Mosora, Collin Harkulich and David Jamieson. For 2013, Brookfield will enroll 151. Also dropping from Division IV to VI in Trumbull County is Newton Falls, which will enroll 145 boys.
McDonald, with just 115 boys, Jackson-Milton, Springfield and South Range are other area teams in D-VI. Brookfield and Springfield play each other to open the season.
Norwayne, which beat the Warriors by a combined score of 91-35 in the playoffs the past two years, dropped to D-V.
"We avoided our nemesis," Clark sad, laughing. "Really, when you make it that far it doesn't matter who you're playing."
With the addition of another division, the biggest shakeup doesn't necessarily come at the bottom. The separation from Division I and II marks a clear divide between the biggest schools. For example, Mason in Warren County, with 1,266 boys is the largest of the 715 football-playing schools in the state. Austintown Fitch (679) Youngstown East (608) and Warren G. Harding (670) are the only are schools that remain D-I. Boardman, with 555 boys drops to Division II.
"It doesn't really change anything," said Spartans wide receiver Turel Thompson, a rising senior. "All we are focused on is winning football games. It doesn't matter what division we're in, that's the reality of it."
Though Jefferson, Western Reserve, Lowellville, Sebring, Mathews, Mineral Ridge, Windham and Youngstown Christian are area teams in the revolutionary seventh division, Eagles coach Brian Marrow doesn't see the distinction.
"It doesn't really matter because it doesn't affect schools like us," Marrow said. "The way I look at it, there's two Division I (tiers), so it does help out some schools where they don't have Mentor or Mason and schools with over 1,000 boys to compete with."
Hubbard, Niles and Poland remain in Division III, but it's almost a new section in itself. Canfield and Howland dropped from D-II to D-III.
"We're one of the smallest Division III schools to begin with," said Red Dragons coach Brian Shaner. "I didn't expect to see Canfield and Howland move down and it's really eye-opening to know that Aurora, Louisville and Marlington are in our region now.
"The top eight teams that come out of the region are going to be tested. We have a brutal schedule, so if we're lucky enough to be playing in Week 11, we'd already have the experience because every game is like a playoff game."
Divisions II, III, IV and VI will hold their playoff games at 7:30 p.m. on Friday nights in the postseason. Divisions I, V and VII will play on Saturday nights at 7 p.m. during the playoffs. There will be eight playofff teams in each region, except for Division I which will have 16 playoff teams in each of its two regions. Ultimately, 224 of the 715 high school football teams in the state will qualify for the postseason.
The 2013 state championships will be held on Dec. 5-7 in Massilon and Canton.
Cardinal Mooney, the 2011 Division III state champions, drop to Division IV. Ursuline, a five-time state champ remains in Division V and is joined by newcomers Campbell, Champion, Girard, LaBrae and Liberty.
"The kids, I'm sure, just worry about playing," Clark said. "They probably don't even know about it or care about it. They're just looking forward to getting out and playing."