OHSAA to move state football title games for Canton for 2017, 2018 seasons

The OHSAA's plan to move its football championship around means the title games in 2017 and 2018 will be at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton. (WSYX/WTTE)

Following its plan to rotate the state football championship games between sites, the Ohio High School Athletic Association will take the games to Canton for the next two seasons.

No details have been finalized beyond 2018, but the organization said it intends to bring the games back to Columbus in 2019. The games were played in Stark County for 24 years before coming to Ohio Stadium for the last three years.

“We had great hosts in Stark County before, and I know we will again,” OHSAA Commissioner Dr. Dan Ross said. “We are blessed in Ohio to have so many outstanding playoff venues like Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton and Ohio Stadium here in Columbus, and our intent all along has been to rotate the finals between the two sites. The last three years in Columbus have been great, and the timing worked out well because Canton and the Pro Football Hall of Fame had major stadium renovations underway at the same time.”

In 2017, championship weekend is set for Nov. 30 through Dec. 3 at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton. The stadium complex is expected to have hotels, shopping and a conference center on site.

The 2017 OHSAA football state championships weekend is Thursday, Nov. 30, through Sunday, Dec. 3. The exact dates and times of the games will be finalized this spring. All seven state championship games will be played at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton.

“We look forward to the OHSAA High School Championships returning to Canton,” said David Baker, President & CEO of the Pro Football Hall of Fame. “Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Village that includes the spectacular, state-of-the-art Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium will provide a rich experience for the many players, coaches, families, and fans attending the games. The excellence in competition among the best football players in the state will be celebrated by the Hall of Fame and our community.”

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