There are plenty of benefits to advancing to the state title football game.

Players are honored on all-star teams, coaches get pats on the back every time they turn down a new hallway in the school and the number of athletes within the program usually jumps because everyone wants to be part of a winner.

Mountain Pointe is enjoying all of it.

There is at least one drawback, especially when it comes just a few months before a brand new scheduling system gets put into action.

Mountain Pointe will have five teams in its newly-created region – Desert Vista, Corona del Sol, Brophy, North and Dobson.

It makes up half of their schedule. The other half ain’t coming easy.

In talking with Norris Vaughan a trip or two out of state may be a possibility because no one wants to play them. Or if he has his way, those out of state programs will be coming to Ahwatukee.

Red Mountain is a possibility, along with Centennial out of Nevada, and maybe a spot in the Sollenberger Classic. All are still being figured out and none are guaranteed.

Even if all of those come through that leaves two games to figure out. No one else seems to be willing to sign that dotted line. Or even engage in conversations about possibly signing a deal.

In the last two-year block, programs only had to find two partners. Now it’s five. Let’s say it’s a good thing athletic director Ian Moses has no hair.

The top programs don’t want to play another top program. Why show your cards before you have to against a possible postseason opponent? Get the easy win and move on.

Under the new MaxPreps formula playing a team a division below is no longer penalized, but good luck getting one of those programs to agree to stepping up against the state runner-up with plenty of talent coming back.

So it will be interesting to see how the schedule shakes out in the next month.

On the other side of town, Desert Vista coach Dan Hinds, whose team has lost a boatload of talent the last two years due to graduation, said via text that the Thunder’s schedule is almost wrapped up.

I could just about guarantee that if the new two-year block would have come before last season that wouldn’t be the case.

The Thunder would have been the team coming off a state title run and they’d be the ones searching high and low for opponents.

Contact writer: (480) 898-7915 or Follow him on Twitter @JSkodaAFN.

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