Let's go through some of the more interesting questions your friendly neighborhood sports editor has received recently.

Why isn't the Boomer softball team ranked higher?

It's hard to say. They are getting recognized to a large extent. A No. 8 ranking in 4A isn't bad at this juncture and seven first place votes from coaches is more than a little impressive. In fact, it's a first in these parts.

But at 18-1, the best record in the class, folks out here probably feel like the Boomers should be higher.

Look, rankings right now are just kind of fodder for discussion. The ranking week to keep an eye on is Sept. 14 because the eventual playoff pairings will come from those. As long as the Boomers keep playing well, they will be fine.

Note: I do want to dispel one issue that seems to crop up a lot. The rankings aren't done by the OSSAA staff. They are done by the coaches in each class in each sport.

Has Woodward ever hosted a softball regional?

No. Part of that is a Boomer team really hasn't put the numbers together to host and part is a travel issue.

That should change this year. The Boomers will likely have the record and ranking to justify a regional, regardless of the travel involved for the other teams.

Certainly there is a lot of softball between now and then, and there is the issue of winning the district tournament first, but if things trend the way they are now, this team will deserve to host come regional tournament time.

While not in softball, Woodward has hosted regionals before, in baseball a couple of times in the late 1990s and early 2000s, so it can happen.

Is Woodward getting a professional baseball team?

Looks that way, barring an unforseen hangup.

The Woodward Westerners will be an expansion team in the Pecos League of Professional Baseball Clubs, an independent baseball league for post-college players under 25. Players in the league must have exhausted all college eligibility.

Andrew Dunn with the Pecos League says the team will play a 70-game schedule from May 20-July 26 with 30 of the games at Fuller Park.

Team colors, Dunn said, are brown and ivory and the Westerners will play in the northern division of the league.

Woodward is the first Oklahoma team in the league that includes clubs in New Mexico, Colorado, Texas and Kansas.

Dunn said a coaching staff and game day staff will be announced on Nov. 1. The team is owned and operated by the Pecos League.

I'm not beholden to any one team high school football team and want to see various games through the season. What would be a good schedule?

Lots of ways to go, but let's try this one. Note that a couple of the games will require a decent amount of traveling.

Sept. 4 - Sharon-Mutual at Seiling. It's a good area rivalry and each team has enjoyed some success. Seiling was a playoff team in Class B last season.

Sept. 11 - Cashion at Mooreland. Two talented Class A teams. Cashion was state runnerup last year.

Sept. 18 - Turpin at Laverne. Turpin is a trendy pick to do well in the state's toughest Class B district. Laverne has owned the district the past few seasons.

Sept. 25 - Thomas at Hooker. Long drive, but might be worth it. Thomas is a clear favorite in District A-1, but the Hooker Bulldogs could offer up a real challenge.

Oct. 2 - Shattuck at Cherokee. Another decent drive. This game could end up determining the C:-1 champion - though several other teams will have a say so.

Oct. 9 - Woodward at Weatherford. Always a good contest and it’s not unusual for the road team to pull off the victory.

Oct. 15 - Thomas at Mooreland. Potential game of the year in the district. Also consider Laverne at Seiling.

Oct. 16 - Anadarko at Woodward. This is fall break week so Friday night games are rare. Last meeting between these teams for a while. Woodward goes up to 5A next year and Anadarko drops to 3A.

Oct. 23 - Boise City at Balko. Two potential playoff teams matching up at Robert Kramer Field.

Oct. 30 - Shattuck at Waynoka. Could be interesting. Waynoka is expected to have one of its better teams recently.

Nov. 6 - Two good choices. Beaver at Mooreland and Balko at Shattuck. Flip a coin if you like.

What is the situation for Class 5A football in 2016-2017?

After Oklahoma City reworked its ADM numbers as requested, Capitol Hill moves into Class 6A and Claremore drops into 5A.

Since Claremore is an eastern school, one of the western teams sent earlier to the east will move back west. Speculation is Del City is the likely choice, or perhaps a Noble.

Now, Woodward is currently in a 7-team district (Capitol Hill is playing football as in independent for two more years in hopes of getting numbers up to a competitive level). That will change to an 8-team league giving the Boomers a full schedule for those two years.

Will Del City simply slide into Woodward's district or will the districts be reshuffled to some extent? That's the main remaining question.

Should find out soon, one would think.

Actually the biggest winner in this whole deal is Enid. US Grant (also playing football as an independent) has been moved into 6A-1, which drops Enid to 6A-2 and away from the powerhouse programs like Jenks, Union, Broken Arrow, etc...

The Plainsmen go from the smallest school in 6A-1 to the largest in 6A-2.

Folks 90 miles east of here are probably quite happy with the turn in fortune.

Johnny McMahan is managing editor of the Woodward News.

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