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Blue Bloods - Indiana High School Football


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This topic intrigued me after seeing that IU basketball was still considered a Blue Blood. A Final Four appearance in the last 20 years kept their status in tact...........until now. They've officially dropped off the charts. Who are the high school football Blue Bloods? What qualifies a team as a Blue Blood? What does a team have to do the maintain that status? The following is my perspective:

Qualifications:

One state title. Two semi-state titles. Five regional titles. Ten sectional titles. 

Maintenance: Last 15 years

One state finals appearance. Two semi-state appearances. Four sectional titles.

1A: Adams Central, Sheridan, and South Putnam.

2A: Mater Dei, Memorial, Luers, Scecina, LLC, Linton-Stockton, and Pioneer

3A: Heritage Hills, Ritter, Southridge, West Lafayette, and Western Boone.

4A: Chatard, Roncalli, Reitz, Lowell, and St. Joe

5A: Columbus East, Dwenger, Snider, Cathedral, New Pal, Valpo, and Zionsville

6A: Ben Davis, Carmel, Center Grove, Penn, Warren Central, and Westfield

Teams left out that surprised me: Avon, Hobart, Jasper, and Merrillville. 

Hobart gets back in with a sectional title any time over the next few years. Merrillville gets in with a state finals appearance, which will be more achievable at the 5A level. 

 

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17 minutes ago, scarab527 said:

Andrean qualifies if you count being in two different classes. 10 sectionals, 5 regionals, 3 semi-states, and 2 state championships in the past 15 years.

Typo: Andrean was in all along. Somehow missed them when plugging the name in. Good catch. 

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1 hour ago, BTF said:

2A: Mater Dei, Memorial, Luers, Scecina, LLC, Linton-Stockton, and Pioneer

Ev. Memorial has never played in 2A. We were in 3A from 1985 through 2018. In 2019 we became the only 3A to win state in 4A after being bumped because of the SF.  And we've always bled blue blood. . . 

IU hasn't been a blue blood since Calbert Cheaney graduated. 

Edited by tango
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4 minutes ago, tango said:

Ev. Memorial has never played in 2A. We were in 3A from 1985 through 2018. In 2019 we became the only 3A to win state in 4A after being bumped because of the SF.  And we've always bled blue blood. . . 

IU hasn't been a blue blood since Calbert Cheaney graduated. 

Evansville Memorial is currently in 2A. Regardless of class, they are a Blue Blood.

Some still consider IU a Blue Blood since they have 5 national championships. 

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29 minutes ago, BTF said:

Evansville Memorial is currently in 2A. Regardless of class, they are a Blue Blood.

Some still consider IU a Blue Blood since they have 5 national championships. 

https://www.maxpreps.com/tournament/HNxv-CopEeyAz5TgcHt2rg/ItcL1SopEeyAz5TgcHt2rg/football-21/2021-22-ihsaa-football-state-tournament-presented-by-the-indianapolis-colts-class-4a-state-championship.htm

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I think it would be interesting to expand the search to the last 25 years, 30 years, 35 years, and 40 years.  This would give an indication of trends, regions, and conferences, and sectionals. Of course all of these variables change.

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52 minutes ago, Goose Liver said:

I think it would be interesting to expand the search to the last 25 years, 30 years, 35 years, and 40 years.  This would give an indication of trends, regions, and conferences, and sectionals. Of course all of these variables change.

I agree, but prior to 1985 it might be tough to glean much because some good teams missed out on the post-season due to the cluster-"you-know-what" of the cluster system... 

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Yeah you shouldn't be surprised by Avon being off the list.  Never won a semistate, never reached the top.

If you expand to 30 years they were a small school power under Jim Kaiser in the 80's, consistently winning 8-10 games a year and dominating the Mid-State. But fell short in 2 semistate contests.  Years they were in the conversation about being a state contender:  2004, 2005 (although Warren was a hill no one could overcome), 2010 (lost regional to LC and Tre Roberson), 2015 (probably their best shot.... beat Cathedral in 2 ot's, lost in semi to Center Grove in 2 ot's), 2019 (ranked #1 for a majority of the season and undefeated until game one of sectionals).

Harrell has a nice compilation of team records over so many years.  Pioneer leads the state for the past 10,15,20 years. No better definition of a blue blood than that.

http://scoreboard.homestead.com/football/yearlyrecords.htm#loaded

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Thanks for starting an interesting topic.  Beats seeding, reclassification, and P/P vs Public debates. 

I would say class is irrelevant somewhat.  IMO the 1A "Blue bloods" - Pioneer, Linton, and LCC are currently in 2A, WeBo/Southridge and Ev Memorial/Chatard are all higher than when they started their runs, same with Columbus East and New Pal (I think) will be returning back to 4A after many years playing up. 

33/34 schools would be a little more than the top 10% where I would draw the line.  Not sure who I would take off though.  Probably Zionsville and Valpo, just because its seems that 4A-5A have been watered down a bit with SF over the last decade.  But that is splitting hairs. 

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37 minutes ago, oldtimeqb said:

Thanks for starting an interesting topic.  Beats seeding, reclassification, and P/P vs Public debates. 

I would say class is irrelevant somewhat.  IMO the 1A "Blue bloods" - Pioneer, Linton, and LCC are currently in 2A, WeBo/Southridge and Ev Memorial/Chatard are all higher than when they started their runs, same with Columbus East and New Pal (I think) will be returning back to 4A after many years playing up. 

33/34 schools would be a little more than the top 10% where I would draw the line.  Not sure who I would take off though.  Probably Zionsville and Valpo, just because its seems that 4A-5A have been watered down a bit with SF over the last decade.  But that is splitting hairs. 

It got me thinking after reading an article about college basketball Blue Bloods. Thought it would be fun. That list could change in several directions depending on the criteria used. I weighed back and forth as to whether one state championship was enough. Having at least 10 sectional titles and and 5 regional titles were the stats I started with. 

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Maybe an exception given to Hobart, Jimtown, Tri-West, and Franklin Central? Four state titles each for those programs. 

Gibson Southern's four sectional titles fell well short of the required ten. They check all the boxes for recent success, but no where on the radar historically. 

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6 hours ago, BTF said:

This topic intrigued me after seeing that IU basketball was still considered a Blue Blood. A Final Four appearance in the last 20 years kept their status in tact...........until now. They've officially dropped off the charts. Who are the high school football Blue Bloods? What qualifies a team as a Blue Blood? What does a team have to do the maintain that status? The following is my perspective:

Qualifications:

One state title. Two semi-state titles. Five regional titles. Ten sectional titles. 

Maintenance: Last 15 years

One state finals appearance. Two semi-state appearances. Four sectional titles.

1A: Adams Central, Sheridan, and South Putnam.

2A: Mater Dei, Memorial, Luers, Scecina, LLC, Linton-Stockton, and Pioneer

3A: Heritage Hills, Ritter, Southridge, West Lafayette, and Western Boone.

4A: Chatard, Roncalli, Reitz, Lowell, and St. Joe

5A: Columbus East, Dwenger, Snider, Cathedral, New Pal, Valpo, and Zionsville

6A: Ben Davis, Carmel, Center Grove, Penn, Warren Central, and Westfield

Teams left out that surprised me: Avon, Hobart, Jasper, and Merrillville. 

Hobart gets back in with a sectional title any time over the next few years. Merrillville gets in with a state finals appearance, which will be more achievable at the 5A level. 

 

Great off-season topic.  Following.

FWIW:  I don’t think blue blood status is eternal.  Your criteria is solid but I think any such status expires after a certain amount of time without success.  

(We can debate the specifics of that time period all day.)

Edited by temptation
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57 minutes ago, temptation said:

Great off-season topic.  Following.

FWIW:  I don’t think blue blood status is eternal.  Your criteria is solid but I think any such status expires after a certain amount of time without success.  

(We can debate the specifics of that time period all day.)

Going back twenty years in college basketball is extreme. I thought I'd go fifteen. Are you thinking ten? I do think history has a place. I mean if someone wanted to argue that their 4 titles outweigh someone else's 9 sectional championships in the last 10 year, then I think they could make a case. 

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19 minutes ago, BTF said:

Going back twenty years in college basketball is extreme. I thought I'd go fifteen. Are you thinking ten? I do think history has a place. I mean if someone wanted to argue that their 4 titles outweigh someone else's 9 sectional championships in the last 10 year, then I think they could make a case. 

My rule of thumb is if the current players who are a part of your program (or if you are recruiting them at the college level) were not born or were too young to remember when you were elite, it’s expired.

Indiana/Georgetown basketball come to mind.

Nebraska/Tennessee football do also.

Edited by temptation
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2 hours ago, temptation said:

My rule of thumb is if the current players who are a part of your program (or if you are recruiting them at the college level) were not born or were too young to remember when you were elite, it’s expired.

Indiana/Georgetown basketball come to mind.

Nebraska/Tennessee football do also.

In my opinion a Blue Blood is a program that has maintained success decade after decade. Otherwise you're  a Johnny Come Lately. You have to come up with a new name for programs who've succeeded just in the last ten years. Blue Bloods are defined by their titles. Titles that were achieved 30 years ago count. But a true Blue Blood continues to be successful. One could argue that a title fifteen years ago shouldn't be added into the "maintenance" part of keeping your status. Although I'm an advocate for fifteen, I could be talked into ten. 

Last ten years: One state title. Two regional titles. Three sectional titles. This won't add any teams to the list, but it will eliminate some. 

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Updated list based on the ten year rule:

1A: No teams 

2A: Andrean, Memorial, Luers, LCC, Linton-Stockton, Pioneer

3A: Southridge, West Lafayette, Western Boone.

4A: Chatard, Roncalli

5A: Columbus East, Dwenger, Snider, Cathedral, New Pal, Valpo

6A: Ben Davis, Carmel, Center Grove, Warren Central, and Westfield

This eliminates 12 teams including Penn. No thanks. I have a hard time calling Westfield a Blue Blood, but not Penn and Hobart.

Penn: 25 sectional titles, 18 regionals, 12 semi-state, 5 state titles

Hobart: 22 sectional titles, 17 regionals, 10 semi-state, 4 state titles

Westfield: 11 sectional titles, 6 regionals, 5 semi-state, 1 state title

The above case in point proves that historical success should bear some weight. My original criteria needs some tweaking. I would consider Hobart a Blue Blood even though they aren't on the list. Westfield doesn't come to mind, but they made the cut. That doesn't make any sense. I wouldn't necessarily eliminate Westfield, but I might say that if you have three state titles to your credit, you automatically qualify as a Blue Blood regardless of your recent success. 

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11 hours ago, BTF said:

This topic intrigued me after seeing that IU basketball was still considered a Blue Blood. A Final Four appearance in the last 20 years kept their status in tact...........until now. They've officially dropped off the charts. Who are the high school football Blue Bloods? What qualifies a team as a Blue Blood? What does a team have to do the maintain that status? The following is my perspective:

Qualifications:

One state title. Two semi-state titles. Five regional titles. Ten sectional titles. 

Maintenance: Last 15 years

One state finals appearance. Two semi-state appearances. Four sectional titles.

1A: Adams Central, Sheridan, and South Putnam.

2A: Mater Dei, Memorial, Luers, Scecina, LLC, Linton-Stockton, and Pioneer

3A: Heritage Hills, Ritter, Southridge, West Lafayette, and Western Boone.

4A: Chatard, Roncalli, Reitz, Lowell, and St. Joe

5A: Columbus East, Dwenger, Snider, Cathedral, New Pal, Valpo, and Zionsville

6A: Ben Davis, Carmel, Center Grove, Penn, Warren Central, and Westfield

Teams left out that surprised me: Avon, Hobart, Jasper, and Merrillville. 

Hobart gets back in with a sectional title any time over the next few years. Merrillville gets in with a state finals appearance, which will be more achievable at the 5A level. 

 

So 20th century high school football isn't relevant?

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3 hours ago, temptation said:

My rule of thumb is if the current players who are a part of your program (or if you are recruiting them at the college level) were not born or were too young to remember when you were elite, it’s expired.

Indiana/Georgetown basketball come to mind.

Nebraska/Tennessee football do also.

Nebraska for sure, 3 titles in 4 years. Not sure about Tennessee, does (1) title and then nothing much before or after put them in that crowd??

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Posted (edited)
11 minutes ago, LaSalle Lions 1976 said:

So 20th century high school football isn't relevant?

I would say historical success wins out over recent success to be considered a Blue Blood. Find a different name for "recently successful." 

Blue Blood: Success is in the blood. A Blue Blood has maintained success over a period of decades. I think a team should have some level of dominance over a twenty year span at some point in the program's history. 

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2 hours ago, BTF said:

Adams Central (22 sectionals) and Sheridan (19 sectionals) both eliminated. No way. 

Our (Adams Central) problem has always been semi state. 2-12 record I believe. Ran into some talented Pioneer, LCC, and Sheridan teams to name a few. This year it was state that tripped us up. How many titles or runner-up finishes could there have been (besides 1 a piece) if that semi state record was better?

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10 hours ago, psaboy said:

Nebraska for sure, 3 titles in 4 years. Not sure about Tennessee, does (1) title and then nothing much before or after put them in that crowd??

Good point.  I guess I have just always assumed Tennessee was a national brand.  Maybe its my age of when I grew up or maybe even I (the biggest SEC hater you don't know) have some SEC bias, lol.

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