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COLUMBUS, Ohio – The season began in August with 716 teams suiting up for the 2016 football season. Now 14 teams remain in Week 15 as we have reached the state championships in Ohio Stadium. Thirteen of the 14 finalists have been to the title game at least once in their school’s history, while Cuyahoga Heights (Div. VI) is in the state championship game for the first time.
State Championships Schedule
Home Team Listed First. Pairings are shown with seeds and overall records.
Thursday, Dec. 1
7:30 PM — Div. II: Massillon Perry (13-1) vs. Cincinnati La Salle (12-2)
Friday, Dec. 2
10:00 AM — Div. VI: Cuyahoga Heights (14-0) vs. Maria Stein Marion Local (13-1)
3:00 PM — Div. IV: Columbus Bishop Hartley (12-2) vs. Steubenville (13-1)
8:00 PM — Div. I: Cincinnati St. Xavier (9-5) vs. Cleveland St. Ignatius (13-1)
Saturday, Dec. 3
10:00 AM — Div. VII: Minster (10-4) vs. Warren John F. Kennedy (13-1)
3:00 PM — Div. III: Trotwood-Madison (12-2) vs. Akron Arch. Hoban (13-1)
8:00 PM — Div. V: Canton Central Catholic (10-3) vs. Coldwater (13-1)
Single-game tickets are available at the participating schools for $10, or at the Ohio Stadium ticket office before each game for $15 (club level, with indoor access) or $12 (reserved). Single-game and all-session tickets are also available online athttp://go.osu.edu/OHSAAFBTix
Two options for all-session ticket books are available for the football state championship games. All-session tickets in the club level, which are the chair-back seats on the west side of the stadium, are $105 each (includes all seven games) and also permit indoor access into the Huntington Club before, during and after each game. All-session reserved ticket books on the east side of the stadium, which don’t include indoor access, are $84 each (includes all seven games). Tickets can also be purchased at the Schottenstein Center box office or by calling 1-800-GOBUCKS.
Ohio Stadium Suites and RV Parking Available
Fans interested in watching the state championship games from a suite inside Ohio Stadium can contact Justin Doyle firstname.lastname@example.org for pricing and availability. Overnight RV parking will be available for $25 per day in the South Riverbank lot. RV parking passes are available for sale day of game only. The lot opens at 7:00 a.m.
State Championship Story Lines and Fun Facts
Ohio Stadium is hosting the state championships for the third-straight year before the finals go back to Canton and the new Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium (formerly Fawcett Stadium) in 2017 and 2018. Note that all seven title games will be in Canton (see later note).
When Cleveland St. Ignatius and Cincinnati St. Xavier meet on Friday night, it will mark the first time that the Div. I state championship game hasn’t been on a Saturday since 1991 when it was played on Sunday, Dec. 1 at 2 p.m. (St. Ignatius beat Centerville).
The Division VI matchup is only state championship game featuring two No. 1 seeds. Three of the title games are rematches from the 2015 state championships (in Div. II, IV and V). Trotwood-Madison (Div. III) is attempting to become the third No. 7 seed to win a state title since the OHSAA expanded the playoff field to eight teams per region in 1999. Only one team that was ranked No. 1 in the final Associated Press polls has advanced to the state championship games (Maria Stein Marion Local in Div. VI). Coldwater (Div. V) is attempting to win its fifth-straight championship and 25th-consecutive playoff game, both of which would be state records.
The 2016 state championships include four of the state’s all-time playoff wins leaders, including No. 2 Cleveland Ignatius (70), No. 3 Coldwater (69), No. 4 Maria Stein Marion Local (66) and Steubenville (61). Newark Catholic leads the state with 72 playoff wins, but was knocked off in the state semifinals by Cuyahoga Heights, which is now in the state championship game for the first time in school history.
For the third-straight season, the Midwest Athletic Conference has sent three teams to the state championship games, including Coldwater in Div. V, Marion Local in Div. VI and Minster in Div. VII. Those three schools all won state titles in 2014, marking the first time a conference produced three state champions in the same season. A straight line spanning 19 miles could connect Minster, Marion Local and Coldwater high schools. Those three schools own a combined 16 state football championships.
Three-Part Geography Lesson
A straight line could connect Minster, Marion Local and Coldwater high schools and it would span only 19 miles. Those three schools own a combined total of 16 state titles. All three schools have advanced to the state championships, which they also did in 2014 when they made the Midwest Athletic Conference the first league to win three state football titles in the same season.
Just five miles separates La Salle and St. Xavier along North Bend Road in Cincinnati. La Salle is in Green Township (Cincinnati’s West Side) and St. Xavier is considered Springfield Township (more central part of city). Courtesy Mike Dyer, WCPO-TV
Canton Central Catholic and Massillon Perry have different street addresses, but both of their football stadiums sit on 13th Street and are located 1.9 miles apart.
Defending State Champions
Four defending state champions are back in Ohio Stadium seeking to defend their titles, including Cincinnati La Salle (Div. II), Akron Archbishop Hoban (Div. III), Columbus Bishop Hartley (Div. IV) and Coldwater (Div. V). All seven state champions advanced to the regional finals.
Most OHSAA State Championship Game Appearances
(Updated Nov. 27, 2016)
1. Newark Catholic, 14
T-2. Cincinnati Archbishop Moeller, 13
T-2. Cleveland St. Ignatius, 13
T-4. Coldwater, 12
T-4. Youngstown Cardinal Mooney, 12
6. Maria Stein Marion Local, 11
7. Versailles, 9
OHSAA FOOTBALL STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS
1. Cleveland St. Ignatius, 11
2. Cincinnati Archbishop Moeller, 9
T-3. Maria Stein Marion Local, 8
T-3. Newark Catholic, 8
T-3. Youngstown Cardinal Mooney, 8
6. Cleveland Benedictine, 7
T-7. Coldwater, 6
T-7. Delphos St. John’s, 6
T-7. St. Henry, 6
T-7. Versailles, 6
T-7. Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary, 6
Rematches in Division II, IV and V
The Division II, IV and V state championship games are all rematches from 2015. Last year in Div. II, Cincinnati La Salle beat Massillon Perry 42-0. In Div. IV, Columbus Bishop Hartley beat Steubenville 31-28. And in Div. V, Coldwater beat Canton Central Catholic 35-18. Coldwater and CCC have met in the Div. V state championship game the last three years.
Consecutive Playoff Wins
Last, year, Maria Stein Marion Local reached the state championship game for the fifth-straight year and set a new OHSAA record for consecutive playoff victories with 24 before falling to Kirtland in the Div. VI state championship game. Now, fellow-MAC member and four-time defending state champion Coldwater has tied that record with 24 straight playoff wins entering the state championship game against Canton Central Catholic.
No. School Years
*denotes streak is still active. Updated Nov. 27, 2016
24 Maria Stein Marion Local 2011‐12‐13‐14-15
*24 Coldwater 2012‐13‐14-15-16
23 Cleveland St. Ignatius 1991‐92‐93‐94‐95‐96
17 Youngstown Ursuline 2008‐09‐10‐12
17 Newark Catholic 84‐85‐86‐87‐88
16 Delphos St. John’s 1997‐98‐99‐2000
15 Versailles 1993‐94‐95‐96
13 Cincinnati Archbishop Moeller 1975‐76‐77‐79‐80‐81