Winter Sports: New Rules

The MHSAA is a crucial part of sports here in Michigan. Establishing the rules for how high schoolers play, our schools and players need to be kept up to date when new changes take place. This year, there have been quite a few. 

Many of the boys wrestling weight classes have been shifted from the 2021-2022 season to 106, 113, 120, 126, 132, 138, 144, 150, 157, 165, 175, 190, 215, and 285 pounds. For girls wrestling, most weight classes will remain unchanged, with the exception of the 255-pound class which will decrease to 235 pounds. These changes have been implemented to match the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) classes.

Due to the consistency of high participation in basketball, the MHSAA announced that teams may play up to 22 regular-season games. The increase from the former 20-game limit applies to all levels of teams: varsity, junior varsity, and freshman.

For hockey, all Regional teams will now be seeded by The Michigan Power Ratings (MPR), as opposed to the previous seeding of only the top two teams. Before the semifinal round, the last four teams in every division will be reseeded and face off based on those rankings.

Bowling tournaments will also see change as the Regional format for games will now match the Finals format with all teams competing in two regular games and eight baker games at both varsity and JV levels.

A new qualification process now applies to divers advancing to swimming & diving Finals. In each of the three divisions, qualifying Regional teams will be guaranteed ten competitors for the Finals. Along with this, six more “floating” entries are given to teams that have one of the returning top six divers in their ranks.

Rule changes in gymnastics give participants more scoring opportunities during the floor performance section and its goal is to encourage a more creative application of dance. The dance now requires gymnasts to include two Group 1 moves – one a leap with legs in cross or side split position. 

Penalty rules have also been adjusted for competitive cheer, the penalty for going over the time limit in each round is now one penalty point for every second the dance goes over the time limit. The penalty points cannot go higher than fifteen points. 

Overall, the MHSAA continues to implement changes to how seasons are set up and the rules players and coaches must abide by, and Chelsea must stay up to date to meet these criteria.