Posted: 4:27 pm Tuesday, February 11th, 2014

Football: King’s Academy set to join independent SFC 

By Anthony Chiang

After struggling to just put together a nine-game regular-season schedule, King’s Academy’s football program is set to join the independent Southeastern Football Conference.

As a member of FHSAA district play, the Lions finished with a 6-3 record and missed the postseason for the third consecutive season last year. Even though King’s Academy officials called schools from Georgia and South Carolina to try and schedule games, the team could not find a way to nail down a full 10-game slate.

This frustration prompted King’s Academy’s football program to join the SFC. The news was first reported by ESPN 106.3 in West Palm Beach.

“One of the biggest concerns that kept coming back up was scheduling,” King’s Academy coach Heath Nivens said. “For two years, we have struggled to find a full competitive schedule without having to travel all over the state.”

There are currently 31 football teams in FHSAA’s Class 3A, compared to 83 teams that are independent.

The Lions will play the 2014 season as part of the SFC, taking the spot of John Carroll. The Rams, which won the SFC championship last year, decided to return to FHSAA district play in January.

According to Nivens, this is the first time King’s Academy’s football program has ever been considered as independent.

The Lions played in a competitive District 7-3A, which included Pahokee, American Heritage and Cardinal Newman, last season. Although King’s Academy won its six out-of-district games, it finished with an 0-3 record within the district last season.

“By most people’s definition, we had a successful season,” Nivens said. “You go 6-3 and beat some of the teams that we beat — by most people’s standards, that’s a great season. But to be sitting at home, watching other teams play in the playoffs, that’s hard to stomach.”

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