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A look back at IHSA football state championship history

Published: Wednesday, Nov. 27, 2013 9:45 a.m. CDT
Caption
(Clark Brooks – PhotoNews)
November 23, 2012 - Champaign, IL - Eagles' Joel Bouagnon goes airborne on a tackle in the first quarter against the Rockets. Aurora Christian led Unity at the half, 14-12.

Over the past 39 years, the IHSA football state finals have formed a rich history of great players, exciting games and memorable moments.

The championships have been played at the University of Illinois, Northwestern and Illinois State during that time, but never have been hosted by Northern Illinois University until this weekend.

Here's a quick look at the extensive history of the IHSA football state finals as it celebrates its 40th anniversary.

1974: First state football finals held at Illinois State University, featuring five classes.

1980: Playoffs expand to six classes

1981: Class 5A and 6A title games moved to Northwestern University

1985: Playoffs expanded from 16 teams to 32 teams in each class. 5A, 6A games moved back to Illinois State. 

1994: Playoffs are seeded for the first time

1999: All championships are moved to the University of Illinois

2001: Playoffs expand to eight classes of 32 teams each.

2013: State championships move to Northern Illinois University for the first time

CURRENT NIU HUSKIES WHO HAVE PLAYED IN IHSA STATE FINALS

Chad Beebe, Aurora Christian

Joel Bouagnon, Aurora Christian

Tate Briggs, Montini Catholic

Jacob Brinlee, Lake Zurich

Sean Folliard, Prairie Ridge

Brandon Mayes, Aurora Christian

Draco Smith, Chicago Mt. Carmel

NOTABLE PLAYERS

Kellen Winslow 1974 East St. Louis

Mike Mallory 1980 DeKalb

Donovan McNabb 1991 Mt. Carmel

Mike Alstott 1991 Joliet Catholic

Simeon Rice 1991 Mt. Carmel

Brian Bulaga 2006 Marian Central

ALL-TIME TITLES

Joliet Catholic 13

Mt. Carmel 11

Providence Catholic 9

Addison (Driscoll) 8

East St. Louis 7

Wheaton Warrenville South 7

Maine South 5

Lombard Montini 5

LOCAL TEAMS RESULTS

1980 DeKalb 11-2. 4A runner-up. Lost 10-7 to Belleville Althoff Catholic. 

1977 Genoa-Kingston 13-0. 1A state champion. Beat Arcola 18-0.

1997 Kaneland 14-0. 3A state champion. Beat Harrisburg 31-7

1998 Kaneland 14-0. 3A state champion. Beat Nashville 21-7

TITLE GAME RECORDS

MOST PASSING YARDS

587 – John Rhode, Lombard Montini, 2011

MOST RUSHING YARDS

515 – Ty Isaac, Joliet Catholic, 2011

MOST RECEIVING YARDS

353 – Jordan Westerkamp, Lombard Montini, 2011

PUNT RETURN TOUCHDOWNS

2 – Stan Walker, Hampshire, 1976

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