The Heart of Illinois Conference and the Central Illinois Conference made a football merger official Monday.
The agreement begins for the 2024 high school football season and will be called the Heart of Central Illinois Conference. In a release Monday, the conferences say this will create stability for 11-man football and keep scheduling consistent for its member schools.
Divisions and schedules will be worked out later, leading to the 2024 season. There will be a large school and small school division with a cutoff of approximately 290-300 student enrollment, with eight schools in each.
The Central Illinois Conference will bring Clinton, Meridian, Central A&M, Shelbyville, Tuscola, and Warrensburg-Latham to the new conference while the Heart of Illinois brings Dee-Mack, El Paso-Gridley, Eureka, Fieldcrest, Fisher, GCMS, Heyworth, LeRoy, Lexington-Ridgeview, Tremont, and Tri-Valley.
The Heart of Illinois Conference also features Flanagan-Cornell, however, they play eight-man football and Ridgeview-Lexington plays as a co-op.