TRM retains region title after EC forfeits

Published 3:36 am Wednesday, January 17, 2007

The process is a now a little more complicated, but the T.R. Miller Tigers football team will officially hang on to the Class 4A Region 1 championship it originally won on the field last fall.
Escambia County announced last week it had forfeited all five of its wins from this past season, which included games against Region 1 foes W.S. Neal, Hillcrest-Evergreen, Jackson and Monroe County along with a non-region game against Alabama Christian.
The win W.S. Neal received gave the Blue Eagles a 10-2 overall record, their first 10-win season since 2003, but it also pulled them into a three-way tie for first place in Region 1 with T.R. Miller and Thomasville with 6-1 records. All three teams also finished the regular season with identical 9-1 records.
Under the old standings where just T.R. Miller and Thomasville finished tied for first place, T.R. Miller was awarded the region championship through its head-to-head win over Thomasville.
Head-to-head competition cannot be used as the tiebreaker to decide the champion under the new standings because T.R. Miller, Thomasville and W.S. Neal split the head-to-head meetings. T.R. Miller beat Thomasville and lost to W.S. Neal. Thomasville beat W.S. Neal and lost to T.R. Miller. W.S. Neal beat T.R. Miller and lost to Thomasville.
The state's next applicable tiebreaker is the wins by a team's defeated opponents. T.R. Miller wins the region crown through this tiebreaker. T.R. Miller's nine defeated regular season opponents have 50 wins, while Thomasville's defeated opponents had 48 and W.S. Neal's defeated opponents had 39.
All three teams picked up 32 wins through its region opponents. W.S. Neal picked up seven additional wins through non-region opponents Daleville (four), Calhoun (two) and Opp (one).
Thomasville picked up 16 wins from non-region foes Sweet Water (eight), Choctaw County (one) and Clarke County (seven).
T.R. Miller got 18 wins from its non-region foes Clarke County (seven), Straughn (three) and Trinity Presbyterian (eight).
While T.R. Miller retains its first place ranking, Thomasville will officially remain in second and W.S. Neal stays at third. After first place is decided in a three-way tie, second place is decided on head-to-head competition for the two remaining teams and Thomasville gets the second place spot based on its win over W.S. Neal.
The revised standings would not have changed the first-round playoff pairings for T.R. Miller, Thomasville and W.S. Neal. T.R. Miller would have still hosted Greene County,
Thomasville would have still hosted Central-Tuscaloosa and W.S. Neal would have still been at Jemison.
The one thing that would have changed is the region's fourth and final qualifying spot. Escambia County originally got that position and played at Fayette County in the first round of the playoffs.
Under the revised standings, the fourth playoff spot would have gone to the Jackson Aggies. Jackson would have played at Fayette County in the first round instead of Escambia County.
Escambia County's forfeits carried into the basketball season where the Blue Devils had to forfeit their first seven wins.
While Escambia County's forfeits did not change the football region champion, it technically changes the champion of last month's Escambia County Boys Basketball Tournament.
T.R. Miller was originally crowned the champion through a tiebreaker after the Tigers, Flomaton and Escambia County all went 2-1 in the round-robin tournament.
One of Escambia County's forfeits goes to Flomaton in that tournament and changes the Hurricanes tournament record to 3-0. T.R. Miller drops to second at 2-1, W.S. Neal improves to third place at 1-2 after its forfeit win and Escambia County drops to fourth at 0-3.

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