OHSAA Approves 7 Football Divisions
COLUMBUS – The Ohio High School Athletic Association Board of Directors met Thursday, Jan. 10, in Columbus for its regularly scheduled January meeting. The following are highlights from the meeting. The complete set of meeting minutes will be posted at OHSAA.org.
– The Board approved a recommendation from the OHSAA staff regarding the seven-division tournament format for the 2013 football state championships. There will be one game Thursday night (Dec. 5), three games Friday (Dec. 6) and three games Saturday (Dec. 7). Per the previously approved contract, the 2013 state championships will be held in Canton and Massillon before moving to Ohio Stadium in Columbus in 2014 and 2015. Exact game times and assignments for which divisions will play on which date/time slots will be determined at a later time.
– The Board approved a recommendation from an OHSAA committee to change the divisional tournament assignment process for cross country so that a school’s girls and boys teams will be in the same division. Beginning in fall 2013, the girls and boys enrollments will be added together and divided in half in order to determine the enrollment number (and subsequent tournament division) for that school in cross country. Currently, divisional alignment is determined separately for girls and boys, and over 50 schools are affected by having their girls and boys teams in different divisions. Even if they are in the same division, an additional 50-plus schools could have their girls and boys qualify to different regional tournaments (the change would ensure that girls and boys teams that are currently in the same division from the same school would be assigned to the same regional site).
– The Board approved an initial group of four referendum items that will be voted upon by the member schools in May during the annual referendum voting period. The four items, which include one constitution item and three bylaw items, will be posted at OHSAA.org. Of note, one of the bylaw referendum items came through the petition process and proposes separating tournaments for public and non-public schools.
– Twelve member schools were recently penalized for committing infractions of OHSAA bylaws or sports regulations. The list of infractions and penalties is always included in the meeting minutes posted at OHSAA.org. Media may request the list from Tim Stried, OHSAA Director of Information Services (firstname.lastname@example.org).
– The golf coaches association made a proposal that would permit coaches to talk with their players on the course at any time except when the player is on the putting surface or in a sand bunker. Currently, coaches are only permitted to talk to their players from the time they leave the green to the tee box of the next hole. The Board is expected to vote on the proposal at its April meeting.
– The volleyball coaches association made three proposals. First, that the net height for junior high volleyball be raised to the high school height of 7 feet, 4 and 1/8 inches. (Currently, the junior high net height is 7 feet.) Second, that the number of dates that high schools are permitted to schedule their 22 varsity matches be expanded from 20 dates to 22 dates. And third, that during high school varsity tri-matches (and other events with more than two teams), the winner can be determined by a best three out of five format by mutual agreement of the competing athletic administrators. (Currently, tri-matches are decided by a best two out of three format.) The Board is expected to vote on the proposal at its April meeting.
– OHSAA staff informed the Board that the spring sports preseason manuals have been completed and will be posted at OHSAA.org and mailed to all athletic administrators to give to their coaches.
– The Board approved two individuals to receive meritorious service awards in which the OHSAA will make a donation in their names to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. The Central District Athletic Board nominated Mike Rotonda, recently retired student activities director for the Columbus City Schools, while the East District Athletic Board nominated Dick Potts, a basketball coach at Bethel, Skyvue and Hannibal River high schools who won 589 games in 40 years and is a member of the Ohio Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame.