Leading off today:
Cicero-North Syracuse football coach Joe Sindoni will be suspended for Saturday's opener
at the Carrier Dome because some of his players wore knee, thigh or hip pads during a practice in violation of rules, The Post-Standard reported Wednesday.
The issue arose Aug. 22 during the fifth day of preseason practice when a Syracuse.com photo gallery from that practice showed some players wearing shorts, some in football pants without pads and others with various pads in their football pants.
Per the Section 3 football handbook, teams cannot wear any protective equipment the first two days of practice. Days 3 through 5 "provide a transition from the conditioning phase to full contact. During this phase, players are permitted to wear helmet and shoulder pads."
The school questioned what it called ambiguity in the rule's wording but does not plan to appeal the decision, the paper reported.
"Even though we feel the penalty is harsh, we will abide by the Section 3 Executive Committee decision," Northstars AD Tim Bednarski said.
Bednarski, who said C-NS did not violate the spirit of the rule (no contact took place at the practice), self-reported to Section 3 after the pictures appeared on Syracuse.com. Sindoni declined comment.
According to the report, C-NS was scrambling over logistics on the day of the infraction. A JV coach was injured on a muddy field earlier in the day, and the varsity practice was moved to Central Square on short notice. The school had planned to issue all equipment on Saturday morning. But because the team was moving its camp to a temporary base at the junior high, players were issued their equipment on Friday and players brought it along on the bus with them to Central Square.
C-NS opens vs. Fayetteville-Manlius.
Following up on Curtis tragedy: The Advance published an editorial Wednesday calling for the Department of Education "to take a close look at how the entire public school high school football program operates" in light of the death of junior Miles Kirkland during Monday's practice at Curtis High.
The editorial went on to say "football fever at high schools here and elsewhere should not be allowed to risk the well-being of young athletes." The piece questioned whether the start of the season should be pushed back to Oct. 1 to cut the number of practices held in warm and humid conditions but acknowledged doing so could expose players to winter-like conditions at the back end of the schedule.
Left unmentioned, however, was the possibility that Kirkland, a third-year varsity player, might have had an undetected medical condition that heightened the risk. The medical examiner's preliminary autopsy results were inconclusive, the paper reported on Tuesday.
You can read the editorial here.
Change at the top: I knew that Colonie had lost football coach Matt Stein over the summer as he took over as athletic director at Mohonasen, and I reported some related transactions. But a story this week pointed out