Baldwin among teams on the move as FHSAA releases finalized football districts

Bolles QB DJ Moore (1) picks up yards in the second quarter against St. Augustine during a Week 3 game. (Ralph D. Priddy, News4Jax)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The final high school football district assignments are set as the new Metro and Suburban divisions prepare for takeoff.

The Florida High School Athletic Association released finalized football districts Thursday morning, with two minor changes and two larger ones for area programs.

Baldwin, which is on the outskirts of Duval County and was originally assigned to the Metro division, was placed in the Suburban class. The Indians join Baker County, Fernandina Beach, West Nassau and Yulee in District 5-2S. The district assignments are for football only and are in place for the next two seasons.

That’s a significant move for the Indians.

Under the new Metro-Suburban format, schools in the largest eight counties in Florida play in the Metro division. A fringe school like Baldwin made sense to petition for a change into the Suburban classification.

To rectify the two-team district that Baldwin’s move created, Riverside was moved from District 1-2M and placed into 3-2M alongside Westside and White.

Matanzas moved down a classification and into District 4-3S with Clay, Gainesville, Menendez and St. Augustine. And Interlachen moved out of district play and became an independent.

The playoff qualifying format remains largely intact, although district play returning to small classifications is a change. Previously, teams in Class 4A and under played in regions and didn’t have opponents locked in.

In Classes 2M-4M and 2S-4S, district champions qualify for the playoffs, with the next four playoff teams determined by FHSAA Power Rankings. That’s a deviation from the RPI metric that had been used to determine playoff seeds. In Classes 1M-1S, district champs earn the automatic playoff berth, with the next two teams with the highest Power Ranking number qualifying. In 1M-1S, only four teams per region qualify. In the Rural division, the top six teams per region qualify.

Metro division

Note: The Metro division includes schools from the eight most populated counties in Florida (Broward, Dade, Duval, Hillsborough, Orange, Palm Beach, Pinellas, Seminole).

District 1-4M

Atlantic Coast

Sandalwood

Mandarin

District 1-3M

Englewood

First Coast

Fletcher

Parker

District 1-2M

Jackson

Raines

Ribault

District 2-2M

Bishop Kenny

Bolles

Episcopal

Wolfson

District 3-2M

Riverside

White

Westside

District 1-1M

Christ’s Church

North Florida Educational Institute

Providence

Trinity Christian

University Christian

Suburban division

District 3-4S

Bartram Trail

Gainesville Buchholz

Creekside

Fleming Island

Oakleaf

District 4-4S

Flagler Palm Coast

Nease

Ponte Vedra

District 3-3S

Columbia

Middleburg

Orange Park

Ridgeview

District 4-3S

Clay

Gainesville

Matanzas

Menendez

St. Augustine

District 4-2S

Suwannee

Taylor County

Wakulla

District 5-2S

Baker County

Baldwin

Fernandina Beach

West Nassau

Yulee

District 6-2S

Bradford

Keystone Heights

Palatka

Tocoi Creek

District 3-1S

P.K. Yonge

St. Joseph

Trinity Catholic

Rural

Region 3-1A

Bell

Branford

Fort White

Hamilton County

Hilliard

Mayo Lafayette

Madison County

Union County

Independent

Beachside

Bishop Snyder

Cedar Creek Christian

Eagle’s View

Global Outreach

Harvest Community

Impact Christian

Interlachen

Paxon

Stanton


About the Author:

Justin Barney joined News4Jax in February 2019, but he’s been covering sports on the First Coast for more than 20 years.