Leesville Road High School is a member of the Cap 8 conference along with Broughton, Enloe, Heritage, Millbrook, Sanderson, Wakefield and Wake Forest. After a repeal of a bylaw stating private and public schools aren’t allowed to play in the same conference, there will be a change to the Cap 8 beginning the 2016-2017 school year.
The Cap 8 is one of the strongest school conferences in the Triangle Area, but beginning the 2016-2017 school year, the Cap 8 will be no more. A change in previously set rules has caused officials to rearrange teams in an attempt to create more “equal” conferences.
Heritage High School, Wakefield High School, and Wake Forest High School will not be part of the Cap 8 next year. These three teams are all located in Wake Forest, just east of Raleigh and 20 miles from Leesville. Assuming Wake County wanted to reduce travel time for away games, the three teams were moved into a conference including Chapel Hill High School, Knightdale, and Rolesville.
While three schools are leaving the Cap 8, two new schools are joining the conference. The Cap 8 will be welcoming Cardinal Gibbons High School, a Catholic private school, and Southeast Raleigh Magnet High School.
Cardinal Gibbons is going to be the first private school to join the Cap 8 conference. Unlike Wake Forest, Wakefield and Heritage, Southeast High and Gibbons are technically located in Raleigh, not Wake Forest. It is assumed that the influential factor was location; changing the conferences to make closer schools play each other.
Bradley Wilson, head football coach at Leesville Road said, “I don’t think it [the conference] will change that much. From what I’ve seen since I’ve been here, all of our teams are competitive, they work hard and have one common goal, so I don’t think it’s going to be that much of a difference.”
The teams of the Cap 8 have never been and probably never will be set in stone. With the continuous building of new schools in and around Raleigh, there is no telling what teams will enter or leave the Cap 8 in the years to come. New talent and competition are sure to emerge from these newly formed conferences as they continue to grow and prosper in the future.