From the Duluth News-Tribune:

A six-person Minnesota State High School League committee placed Duluth East and Duluth Denfeld in the Mississippi 8 Conference starting in 2012. The Duluth schools previously had applied to — and been rejected by — the Mississippi 8, Central Lakes and Sea-Range conferences, leaving the matter in the hands of the MSHSL.

“Ultimately, it was probably the right choice,” said Duluth Central activities director Tom Pearson, whose school will close at the end of the school year and reopen as Denfeld in 2011-12. “Geographically speaking, I would have loved to be in the Sea-Range, but size-wise it didn’t make any sense. Nobody wanted us, but the committee made a decision that works for our school. We’re used to travel, so that’s not too big of a deal. I think it’s a good fit for us.”

The Mississippi 8 is currently composed of Becker, Big Lake, Buffalo, Cambridge-Isanti, Monticello, Princeton, Rogers, St. Michael-Albertville and Zimmerman in all sports, with the addition of Elk River in football.