Albert Gallatin’s departure leaves open week for Big East opponents to fill

Monday, January 21, 2019 | 11:09 PM

The Big East football conference just got a little smaller.

As expected, the Class 5A conference will have only seven teams next fall, now that Albert Gallatin has withdrawn from playing WPIAL football. The WPIAL approved an updated conference alignment at Monday’s board meeting.

Albert Gallatin’s subtraction was the only change in any WPIAL classification.

With only seven teams, Big East opponents Connellsville, Franklin Regional, Gateway, Latrobe, McKeesport, Penn-Trafford and Plum each are left with an open week in their schedule next season. They have the option to fill that week with an out-of-district opponent, WPIAL executive director Tim O’Malley said.

Albert Gallatin decided in October that its football team would not compete in the WPIAL next season and instead play an independent schedule. The Colonials went 0-10 this past season, bringing its record to 9-82 over the past decade.

Their departure also leaves a hole in the schedules of nonconference opponents. City League member University Prep has agreed to play Laurel Highlands, said Mike Gavlik, athletic director for Pittsburgh Public Schools.

Chris Harlan is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Chris at or via Twitter @CHarlan_Trib.

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