Last week in the first round of the girls' playoffs, General Trass, a winless team ranked 29th overall, was defeated by Red River by a score of 100-5.

Last week in the first round of the girls' playoffs, General Trass, a winless team ranked 29th overall, was defeated by Red River by a score of 100-5.

Another game had a score of 85-9. Even worse, New Living Word, the No. 1 seed in the Division V playoffs, qualified for the Top 48 in Hammond … without even playing a game.

And just Friday night, the Rosepine Eagles were beaten in the first round of the playoffs by Madison Prep in the Class 2A bracket, 134-32.

Thus, this is the world we live in with the split between select and non-select schools in the state of Louisiana.

For those of you who don't get what I'm talking about, I'll explain.

Several years ago, a few football coaches were upset about teams like Evangel and John Curtis winning state championships every year against public schools. At first, Evangel was winning in Class 5A and John Curtis dominated Class 4A.

So, when the Louisiana High School Athletic Association got together for its annual meeting of the principals, it was determined that each of the schools in the state were limited to playing at their enrollment level, thus pushing both Evangel and Curtis into Class 2A.

Well, after a few years of Evangel against John Curtis in the Class 2A finals, it was deemed that we should split private schools (select) and public schools (non-select) from each other, but just in the football playoffs.

The state of Louisiana, with only about 400-football playing high schools, now has nine football state champions — five in non-select, where there are more schools, and four in non-select, where there are about 80 schools max.

Last year, a proposal was passed extending the split to basketball, softball and baseball. During this upcoming week in Hammond, 12 girls basketball teams — seven non-select and five select — will win state titles. The following week in Lake Charles, the same will happen with the boys.

In May, 12 softball teams and 12 baseball teams will win titles in southwest Louisiana.

For one sport to crown 12 state champions is ridiculous, especially in a state the size of Louisiana. In our neighboring state of Texas, the University Interscholastic League, the group which governs high school athletic at the public school level, crowns just six state champions in 11-man football and has considerably more teams.

Would you like to see some more ridiculousness. In the Division V girls' basketball bracket, only seven teams are in it. That means the No. 1 seed, which happens to be New Living Word, advanced to Hammond without playing a single playoff game. The other six advanced to the state quarterfinals automatically, with Grace Christian, a team that lost to 1-win Evans, reaching the state tournament as a No. 3 seed.

Throw in the ridiculous scores from the first round and you have a situation that needs repaired and repaired quickly.

First and foremost, the LHSAA should cut the number of non-select classifications down from seven to five. You can accomplish this by eliminating Class 5A completely, along with combining Classes 1A, B and C, which are virtually the same with the exception of Class 1A having football. In doing this, you can still have a 32-team bracket and make the playoffs a bit more prestigious.

In select, chop it down from five divisions to just two and allow for only a 24-team bracket. The best of the best will rise to the top.

When I played back some 25 years ago, we didn't back down from any challenge. We played against private schools all the time, along with playing against much bigger public schools. If we couldn't hang with them, we just knew we had to work harder to get to that point. And that's what we did and we didn't whine about the playing field not being level.

It seems to me as if there are too many people out there who just want “Little Susie” or “Little Johnny” to get that ring, the process be damned. It's all about instant gratification instead of working hard for success.

The same people who are livid about people being on welfare not working for a living are the same people who support just handing out a trophy for the sake of handing out a trophy because they don't want someone having their feelings hurt.

The LHSAA needs to fix this mess and fix it now or we will continue to have the most watered-down playoff system in the country.

And continue to be an embarrassment.

Daniel Green is the sports editor of the Leesville Daily Leader. He can be reached at