KHSAA Commonwealth Gridiron Bowl

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The KHSAA Commonwealth Gridiron Bowl is a series of football games, typically held on the first weekend of December, that determine the high school champions of the U.S. state of Kentucky. The tournaments that lead to the championship games, as well as regular-season competition, are governed by the Kentucky High School Athletic Association (KHSAA).

The KHSAA began conducting state football championships in 1959. Throughout its history, the competition has been divided into classes based on enrollment (though with historic exceptions noted below). The history of classifications is as follows:

  • 1959–1974: Three-class system. All schools in Jefferson County, which includes (and is now consolidated with) the state's largest city of Louisville, were placed in Class 3A regardless of enrollment. Remaining schools were placed in Class 2A or A based on enrollment.
  • 1975–1986: Quasi-four-class system. Initially, all high schools in Jefferson County were placed in Class 4A regardless of enrollment, though by the end of this era smaller schools began to be placed in their appropriate enrollment classes. In this era, there were two separate 4A champions—a "State 4A" winner from outside Jefferson County and a "Jefferson County 4A" champion—that would meet for an overall 4A title.
  • 1987–2006: True four-class system, with all Jefferson County schools classified according to their enrollment.
  • 2007–present: Six-class system, again based on enrollment, but with a slight change in calculation of enrollment. Historically, schools were classified based on total enrollment in grades 9 to 12, with all-boys schools treated as having twice their actual enrollment. With the expansion to six classes, the KHSAA changed the basis for classification to enrollment of boys only in the same grades.

Traditionally, the championship games were held in Louisville, first at Cardinal Stadium and later at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium. Starting in 2009, the games moved to Houchens Industries – L. T. Smith Stadium on the campus of Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green. With the expansion to six classes, the Gridiron Bowl is now a two-day affair, with three championship games on Friday and three on Saturday.

6A State Champions[edit]

Year Champion Score Opponent State Champion Head Coach
2013 Scott County 21-14 Meade County Jim Mckee
2012 Trinity 61-7 Pleasure Ridge Park Bob Beatty
2011 Trinity 62-21 Scott County Bob Beatty
2010 Trinity 42-0 Male Bob Beatty
2009 St. Xavier 34–10 Trinity Mike Glaser
2008 Trinity 48-0 Simon Kenton Bob Beatty
2007 Trinity 34-28 OT St. Xavier Bob Beatty

5A State Champions[edit]

Year Champion Score Opponent State Champion Head coach
2013 Bowling Green 49-14 Pulaski County Kevin Wallace, Sr.
2012 Bowling Green 34–20 Cooper Kevin Wallace, Sr.
2011 Bowling Green 55–3 Anderson County Kevin Wallace, Sr.
2010 Highlands 50–0 Christian County Dale Mueller
2009 Highlands 35-7 John Hardin Dale Mueller
2008 Highlands 35-15 Christian County Dale Mueller
2007 Highlands 28-7 Bowling Green Dale Mueller

4A State Champions[edit]

Year State Champion Score State Runner-Up State Champion Head coach
2013 Collins 37-34 Highlands Jerry Lucas
2012 Highlands 47-0 Collins Dale Mueller
2011 Highlands 42-14 Franklin-Simpson Dale Mueller
2010 Boyle County 21–14 Allen County-Scottsville Larry French
2009 Boyle County 42-39 (2 OT) Lone Oak[1] Larry French
2008 Bell County 15-13 Bullitt East Dudley Hilton
2007 Lexington Catholic 49-7 Lone Oak[1] Bill Letton
2006 Trinity (14) 41-7 Ryle Bob Beatty
2005 Trinity (13) 14-6 St. Xavier Bob Beatty
2004 St. Xavier (8) 49-9 Scott County Mike Glaser
2003 Trinity (12) 17-14 St. Xavier Bob Beatty
2002 Trinity (11) 59-56 Male Bob Beatty
2001 Trinity (10) 45-19 Male Bob Beatty
2000 Male (3) 34-14 Trinity Bob Redman
1999 St. Xavier (7) 34-31 OT Bryan Station Mike Glaser
1998 Male (2) 31-7 Tates Creek Bob Redman
1997 St. Xavier (6) 3-0 Trinity Mike Glaser
1996 Nelson County (1) 35-34 OT Paul Dunbar Mike Brown
1995 St. Xavier (5) 26-0 Henry Clay Mike Glaser
1994 Trinity (9) 21-7 Boone County Dennis Lampley
1993 Male (1) 29-7 Shelby County Bob Redman
1992 St. Xavier (4) 3-0 Boone County Mike Glaser
1991 George Rogers Clark (1) 28-21 St. Xavier Don Danko
1990 Trinity (8) 27-0 Warren Central Dennis Lampley
1989 Trinity (7) 28-0 Warren Central Dennis Lampley
1988 Trinity (6) 28-0 DuPont Manual Dennis Lampley
1987 Shelby County (1) 17-14 Boone County Tom Becherer
1986 St. Xavier (3) 27-14 Boone County Mike Glaser
1985 Trinity (5) 28-7 Lafayette Dennis Lampley
1984 Christian County (2) 14-10 Ballard Dan Goble
1983 Trinity (4) 26-7 Owensboro Roger Gruneisen
1982 Christian County (1) 10-3 Southern Dan Goble
1981 Henry Clay (1) 20-7 DeSales Jake Bell
1980 Trinity (3) 31-8 Paducah Tilghman[2] Roger Gruneisen
1979 Butler (1) 21-7 Henry Clay Joe Hood
1978 St. Xavier (2) 42-21 Tates Creek Mike Stewart
1977 Trinity (2) 28-7 Greenup County Dave Moore
1976 Trinity (1) 28-24 Henderson County Dave Moore
1975 St. Xavier (1) 20-0 Ashland Blazer Bill Glaser

3A State Champions[edit]

Year State Champion Score State Runner-Up State Champion Head coach
2013 Belfry 3-0 Wayne County Philip Haywood
2012 Louisville Central 12-6 (OT) Belfry Ty Scroggins
2011 Louisville Central 15-14 Belfry Ty Scroggins
2010 Louisville Central 46–7 Belfry Ty Scroggins
2009 Paducah Tilghman[2] 21–0 Somerset Randy Wyatt
2008 Louisville Central 40-19 Breathitt County Ty Scroggins
2007 Louisville Central 27-17 Belfry Ty Scroggins
2006 Covington Catholic 28-7 Bowling Green Jon Rodenberg
2005 Lexington Cathollic 49-21 Bowling Green Bob Spire
2004 Highlands 22-6 Boyle County Dale Mueller
2003 Boyle County 44-10 Highlands Chuck Smith
2002 Boyle County 21-0 Rockcastle County Chuck Smith
2001 Boyle County 49-14 Rockcastle County Chuck Smith
2000 Highlands 48-27 Owensboro Dale Mueller
1999 Highlands 48-10 Waggener Dale Mueller
1998 Highlands 56-7 Waggener Dale Mueller
1997 Covington Catholic 21-13 Hopkinsville Lynn Ray
1996 Highlands 21-14 Hopkinsville Dale Mueller
1995 Bowling Green 28-12 Highlands Dan Haley
1994 Covington Catholic 24-21 Bowling Green Lynn Ray
1993 Covington Catholic 28-13 Lincoln County Lynn Ray
1992 Highlands 15-6 Paducah Tilghman[2] Tom Duffy
1991 Bell County 35-13 Meade County Dudley Hilton
1990 Paul Blazer 45-13 Lincoln County Vic Marsh
1989 Highlands 27-3 Paducah Tilghman[2] Tom Duffy
1988 Covington Catholic 30-24 OT Paducah Tilghman[2] Lynn Ray
1987 Covington Catholic 16-6 Paducah Tilghman[2] Lynn Ray
1986 Owensboro 14-0 Belfry Larry Moore
1985 Paducah Tilghman[2] 29-14 Belfry Allan Cox
1984 Danville 24-6 Hopkinsville Tom Duffy
1983 Conner 12-7 Franklin-Simpson Bob Lewis
1982 Highlands 6-0 Franklin-Simpson Bob Herrmann
1981 Highlands 40-24 Elizabethtown Bob Herrmann
1980 Franklin-Simpson 16-0 Conner James Matthews
1979 Franklin-Simpson 33-0 Belfry James Matthews
1978 Russell 17-7 Woodford County Ivan McGlone
1977 Highlands 6-0 Shelby County Bob Herrmann
1976 Lloyd Memorial 24-0 Shelby County Jim Dougherty
1975 Highlands 21-0 Franklin-Simpson Roger Walz
1974 St. Xavier 48-14 Westport[3] Bill Glaser
1973 Trinity 16-0 Southern Dave Moore
1972 Trinity 21-0 Butler Jim Kennedy
1971 Flaget[4] 7-7 Thomas Jefferson[5] Pete Compise
1970 Butler 20-0 Trinity Elmer Collina
1969 St. Xavier 15-0 Butler Leon Dunagan
1968 Trinity 29-18 Seneca Jim Kennedy
1967 Flaget[4] 21-0 Thomas Jefferson[5] Norm Mackin
1966 DuPont Manual 33-6 Butler Charlie Bentley
1965 Seneca 13-12 Flaget Ron Cain
1964 Male 27-0 Eastern Charlie Kuhn
1963 Male 23-7 Waggener Charlie Kuhn
1962 St. Xavier 7-6 Valley Johnny Meihaus
1961 Flaget[4] 41-13 Fairdale Paulie Miller
1960 Male 1-0 Eastern Charlie Kuhn
1959 DuPont Manual 44-14 Durrett[3] Tom Harper

2A State Champions[edit]

Year Champion Score Opponent State Champion Head coach
2013 DeSales 34-26 Newport Central Catholic Harold Davis
2012 Newport Central Catholic 30–26 Caldwell County Edward Eviston
2011 Covington Holy Cross 33-14 Glasgow Bruce Kozerski
2010 Newport Central Catholic 42–0 Owensboro Catholic Edward Eviston
2009 Fort Campbell 29–9 DeSales Shawn Berner
2008 Fort Campbell 26-23 Newport Central Catholic Shawn Berner
2007 Fort Campbell 21-7 Newport Central Catholic Shawn Berner
2006 Mercer County 15-12 Russell Marty Jaggers
2005 Russell 27-14 Owensboro Catholic Ivan McGlone
2004 Belfry 28-21 Owensboro Catholic Philip Haywood
2003 Belfry 33-27 OT Elizabethtown Philip Haywood
2002 Breathitt County 52-0 Corbin Mike Holcomb
2001 Bardstown 47-16 Prestonsburg Joey Downs
2000 Boyle County 38-6 Glasgow Chuck Smith
1999 Boyle County 29-6 Glasgow Chuck Smith
1998 Caldwell County 38-28 Danville Pat Gates
1997 Bourbon County 39-28 Owensboro Catholic Dudley Hilton
1996 Breathitt County 25-21 Fort Knox Mike Holcomb
1995 Breathitt County 42-35 2OT Franklin-Simpson Mike Holcomb
1994 Danville 39-7 Bullitt East Sam Harp
1993 Mayfield 13-12 Prestonsburg Paul Leahy
1992 Danville 34-7 Mayfield Sam Harp
1991 Danville 17-14 Mayfield Sam Harp
1990 Fort Knox 21-7 Corbin Joe Jaggers
1989 Danville 7-3 Mayfield Sam Harp
1988 Fort Knox 45-21 Somerset Joe Jaggers
1987 Danville 24-23 Mayfield Tom Duffy
1986 Mayfield 21-20 OT Newport Catholic[6] Jack Morris
1985 Mayfield 18-8 Newport Catholic[6] Jack Morris
1984 Newport Catholic[6] 12-7 Fort Knox Bob Schneider
1983 Fort Knox 19-14 Somerset Joe Jaggers
1982 Corbin 18-6 Glasgow Larry “Cotton” Adams
1981 Bardstown 20-6 Somerset Garnis Martin
1980 Corbin 16-7 Fort Campbell Archie Powers
1979 Fort Campbell 26-0 Pikeville Marshall Patterson
1978 Mayfield 22-6 Somerset Jack Morris
1977 Mayfield 14-13 Corbin Jack Morris
1976 Corbin 6-0 Mayfield Archie Powers
1975 Scott County 22-20 Middlesboro Bill Wilson
1974 Owensboro 14-7 Middlesboro Gerald Poynter
1973 Paducah Tilghman[2] 27-8 Boyd County Dan Haley
1972 Tates Creek 16-7 Paul Blazer Roy Walton
1971 Bryan Station 14-3 Madisonville Terry Clark
1970 Highlands 30-13 Madisonville Mike Murphy
1969 Elizabethtown 21-8 Bryan Station Vince Hancock
1968 Highlands 32-7 Elizabethtown Mike Murphy
1967 Paul Blazer 19-14 Elizabethtown Jake Hallum
1966 Hopkinsville 27-6 Highlands Fleming Thornton
1965 Hopkinsville 24-6 Middlesboro Fleming Thornton
1964 Highlands 36-0 Madison[7] Owen Hauck
1963 Caldwell County 14-7 Highlands Fred Clayton
1962 Danville 13-6 Corbin Ray Callahan
1961 Highlands 12-0 Madison[7] Homer Rice
1960 Highlands 21-13 Lafayette Homer Rice
1959 Henderson[8] 12-7 Highlands Don Shelton

1A State Champions[edit]

Year Champion Score Opponent State Champion Head coach
2013 Mayfield 42-0 Williamsburg Joe Morris
2012 Mayfield 55–8 Fairview Joe Morris
2011 Hazard 24–6 Mayfield Mark Dixon
2010 Mayfield 47–6 Hazard Joe Morris
2009 Lexington Christian 55–19 Mayfield Paul Rains
2008 Beechwood 14–7 Hazard Noel Rash
2007 Beechwood 38–35 Lexington Christian Noel Rash
2006 Newport Central Catholic 37-34 Danville Bob Schneider
2005 Newport Central Catholic 42-7 Mayfield Bob Schneider
2004 Beechwood 23-7 Danville Mike Yeagle
2003 Danville 42-7 Beechwood Sam Harp
2002 Mayfield 14-7 Beechwood Joe Morris
2001 Danville 14-13 Newport Central Catholic Sam Harp
2000 Danville 23-9 Newport Central Catholic Sam Harp
1999 Beechwood 45-22 Hancock County Mike Yeagle
1998 Middlesboro 27-6 Mayfield Ken Roark
1997 Beechwood 26-0 Harrodsburg[9] Mike Yeagle
1996 Beechwood 21-14 OT Harrodsburg[9] Mike Yeagle
1995 Mayfield 28-27 Beechwood Paul Leahy
1994 Beechwood 18-16 Murray Mike Yeagle
1993 Beechwood 13-12 Bardstown Mike Yeagle
1992 Beechwood 21-14 Bardstown Mike Yeagle
1991 Beechwood 34-6 Pikeville Mike Yeagle
1990 Russellville 21-7 Bellevue Ken Barrett
1989 Pikeville 20-7 Trigg County Hillard Howard
1988 Pikeville 28-10 Harrodsburg[9] Hillard Howard
1987 Pikeville 28-6 Russellville Hillard Howard
1986 Heath[1][10] 27-12 Cumberland[11] Rodney Bushong
1985 Crittenden County 14-6 Paintsville Pat Gates
1984 Beechwood 35-26 Paris Bernie Barre
1983 Russellville 42-13 Cumberland[11] Ken Barrett
1982 Paris 35-6 Cumberland[11] Randy Reese
1981 Paris 19-7 Bellevue Randy Reese
1980 Russellville 16-0 Bellevue Ken Barrett
1979 Bellevue 7-0 Madison[7] Fred Bernier
1978 Fort Campbell 15-13 Paintsville Marshall Patterson
1977 Bellevue 21-0 Frankfort Bill Baldridge
1976 Fort Campbell 22-0 Bellevue Marshall Patterson
1975 Ludlow 7-6 Heath[1][10] Randy Reese
1974 Murray 14-0 Beechwood John Hina
1973 Paris 21-12 Elkhorn City[12] Homer Goins
1972 Trigg County 22-0 Pikeville Joe Jaggers
1971 Trigg County 30-23 Lynch East Main[13] Joe Jaggers
1970 Bardstown 13-6 Lynch East Main[13] Garnis Martin
1969 Mt. Sterling[14] 21-13 Bardstown Charles Ishmael
1968 Lynch East Main[13] 14-6 Frankfort Ed Miracle
1967 Bardstown 20-13 Mt. Sterling[14] Garnis Martin
1966 Dayton 6-2 Russellville Ray King
1965 Lloyd Memorial 27-0 Old Kentucky Home[15] Jack Turner
1964 Elkhorn City[12] 33-7 Russellville Jack Hall
1963 Lynch East Main[13] 13-6 Shelbyville[16] Ed Miracle
1962 Versailles[17] 21-0 Lynch East Main[13] John Snowden
1961 Murray 14-13 Lynch East Main[13] Ty Holland
1960 Lynch East Main[13] 39-0 Murray Ed Miracle
1959 Lynch East Main[13] 40-0 Henderson Douglas[18] Ed Miracle

Championships, by schools[edit]

The following is a list of all schools that have won at least one KHSAA Commonwealth Gridiron Bowl Championship, along with what years they have won their championship(s).
School Titles Years
Ft. Thomas Highlands 22 1960, 1961, 1964, 1968, 1970, 1975, 1977, 1981, 1982, 1989, 1992, 1996, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2004, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012
Trinity 22 1968, 1972, 1973, 1976, 1977, 1980, 1983, 1985, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1994, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012
St. Xavier 12 1962, 1969, 1974, 1975, 1978, 1986, 1992, 1995, 1997, 1999, 2004, 2009
Beechwood 11 1984, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1996, 1997, 1999, 2004, 2007, 2008
Danville 10 1962, 1984, 1987, 1989, 1991, 1992, 1994, 2000, 2001, 2003
Mayfield 10 1977, 1978, 1985, 1986, 1993, 1995, 2002, 2010, 2012, 2013
Boyle County 7 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2009, 2010
Male 6 1960, 1963, 1964, 1993, 1998, 2000
Covington Catholic 6 1987, 1988, 1993, 1994, 1997, 2006
Fort Campbell 6 1976, 1978, 1979, 2007, 2008, 2009
Central 5 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012
Newport Central Catholic 5 1984, 2005, 2006, 2010, 2012
Bardstown 4 1967, 1970, 1981, 2001
Bowling Green 4 1995, 2011, 2012, 2013
Lynch 4 1959, 1960, 1963, 1968

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Consolidated into McCracken County High School as Mustangs on August 9th 2013.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Tilghman did not participate in the McCracken County High consolidation, as it is operated by a separate district.
  3. ^ a b Defunct.
  4. ^ a b c Closed in 1974.
  5. ^ a b Closed as a high school; still exists as a middle school.
  6. ^ a b c This was the all-boys school that merged with the all-girls Our Lady of Providence High School to form today's Newport Central Catholic.
  7. ^ a b c This school, located in Richmond, was absorbed into Madison Central High School in 1989.
  8. ^ Later merged into today's Henderson County High School.
  9. ^ a b c Merged into Mercer County High in 2006.
  10. ^ a b This is the "Heath" of the 1997 Heath High School shooting. The district that operates Heath, the McCracken County Public Schools, has received state approval for plans to consolidate its three current high schools into the new McCracken County High School, which it opened on August 9th 2013.
  11. ^ a b c Consolidated into Harlan County High School in 2008.
  12. ^ a b Consolidated into East Ridge High School in 2002.
  13. ^ a b c d e f g h Consolidated into Cumberland High School, which was in turn consolidated into Harlan County High in 2008.
  14. ^ a b Consolidated into today's Montgomery County High School.
  15. ^ Consolidated into today's Nelson County High School. Nelson County High's attendance zone will be cut roughly in half in 2012 with the opening of Thomas Nelson High School.
  16. ^ Consolidated into today's Shelby County High School. In 2010, Shelby County High's enrollment and attendance zone were cut roughly in half with the opening of Martha Layne Collins High School.
  17. ^ Consolidated into today's Woodford County High School in 1964.
  18. ^ This was Henderson's former black high school, which was closed when the city's schools integrated, with its students going to either the Henderson city district or the Henderson County district. The two districts merged in the 1970s, creating today's Henderson County High.

External links[edit]