After being granted its release from the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools (TAPPS), Faith Academy athletic director Chuck Tomlinson said the school was looking to join the Texas Association of Independent Athletic Organizations (TAIAO) fulltime starting this winter with the basketball season.
The cross country team was able to compete at the TAIAO state championship after leaving TAPPS but the Knights’ other fall sports teams, volleyball and football, had their seasons finish at the end of the regular season without postseason play in either league. The volleyball squad didn’t lose a game to TAPPS opponents and although the football team played its final three contests against TAIAO opponents, they didn’t play enough games in the league to qualify for the playoffs.
The TAIAO was established seven years ago and expected to have more than 40 organizations compete in the 2019-2020 athletic season between private, charter and public schools as well as homeschool associations, according to information on their website TAIAO.org.
The site says the league offers six-man football, baseball, softball, basketball, cross country, soccer, track and field and volleyball and was planning on having its first academic meet in the spring of 2020. Faith Academy doesn’t field a soccer team and the only sports it had previously offered that the TAIAO does not are tennis and golf.
“The Texas Association of Independent Athletic Organizations was formed in 2013 by a group of like-minded six-man football coaches that for various reasons did not ‘fit’ in with existing football or athletic leagues in Texas,” the website’s homepage says. “The organization is ‘run by the members’ with nobody’s input being ignored. The leadership and member organizations commit to always remember that it is, ‘all about the kids,’ and do everything we can to keep the adults ego’s out of the equation when decisions are being made.”
According to MaxPreps, there were 12 six-man football teams in Division 2 of TAIAO and 10 teams in Division 1 that competed this fall and 13 volleyball teams competed in Division 1 and nine teams competed in Division 2. Eleven boys’ basketball teams and seven girls’ basketball teams are listed and some have already started playing and 11 baseball teams and eight softball teams are scheduled to play in the spring.