Leading off today:
The story about Section 2's financial mess -- and that is still the appropriate word, though "scandal" is starting to rear its ugly head -- has grown a bit stranger with the report Sunday by The Times Union that the widow of an Albany-region high school athletic association official discovered $93,000 in cash in the couple’s home last month.
The discovery came about six months after Section 2 treasurer Roger Seward killed himself hours before a scheduled meeting with auditors that would almost certainly have raised red flags about his fitness to administrate the organization's finances.
The paper reported that Section 2 President Paul Jenkins said the cash bundles were tagged with documentation noting they were receipts from sectional basketball and softball events. Although it would have been plausible for Seward to still be in possession of money handed over from site supervisors at spring contests, the fact that money from February or March basketball games had not been deposited contributes to suspicions that have attracted the interest of police.
The paper says law enforcement agencies are monitoring the internal audit being done by Section 2. Earlier reporting by The Times Union indicates that an elaborate audit Seward turned over to sectional officials in December 2011 purporting to show the treasurer was following sound financial practices was probably fraudulent.
Seward's suicide in June left behind a tangled web of bank accounts, further confused by a lack of internal documentation and the possibility that Section 2 failed for perhaps decades to follow IRS regulations governing not-for-profits.
With clarity about the section's financial status lacking, Section 2 schools are feeling the pinch. The paper reported recently that the largest schools are paying $1,300 a year in annual dues. By comparison, Section 5 officials meeting last week discussed whether the Rochester-area organization's bank balance would allow for suspending dues for a year in order to assist member schools being affected by tight budgets.
Here are links to past stories about this Section 2 saga:
Jan. 13, 2013: Sec. 2 audit in progress
Oct. 2, 2012: Sec. 2 has no idea whether it's rich or broke
This is no way to run an event, guys: There's a lot of good girls basketball action taking place this weekend in a major New York City event, but details are more or less secret because of childish behavior on the part of organizers.
New York Daily News sportswriter Mitch Abramson reported on Twitter that his paper and apparently several others, including The New York Post, have been banned from attending the four-day, 41-school Rose Classic Super Jam. Abramson believes the punishment stems in large part from a story he wrote last week correctly noting the highly disorganized nature of last season's event, which included games starting as late as 11 p.m. (Hello !?!?!? These are still high school kids.)
So, without further ado, here's a link to the at times unflattering story that someone (or perhaps multiple someones) wishes you did not read.
By the way, as Abramson alluded to on Twitter, I doubt Nike and the other sponsors of this event would be pleased to learn that major media companies are being