Leading off today:
Glens Falls has competition from Albany and Binghamton as it seeks to continue hosting the New York State Public High School Athletic Association boys basketball championships.
The deadline for submitting proposals to host the 2017-19 tournaments was Friday. The current three-year boys contract concludes after next March's tournament in Glens Falls. The girls tournament was also up for bids this summer, but appears to be safely entrenched at Hudson Valley Community College in Troy since no competing bids were submitted by the end of last week.
The Glens Falls Civic Center now finds itself competing with the Broome County Arena and the nearby Times Union Center for the boys playoffs.
Glens Falls has which has hosted the boys final fours at its Civic Center since 1981, faced no competing bids when the most recent three-year contract came up for bids in 2013.
Albany wrestled the Federation basketball tournament away from Glens Falls after the 2010 event. The first four years were held at the Times Union Center, and the event shifted to University at Albany this past season due to a scheduling conflict with the NCAA women's Division I basketball tournament.
The NYSPHSAA declined to release the basketball bid proposals to the media ahead of committee meetings later this month. On Sept. 25, the boys basketball committee hears presentations from representatives of the competing venues. The girls committee meets three days later. It's likely both committees will make their decisions on those days, but there's the added dynamic of recommendations from the NYSPHSAA office to factor in.
Last spring, the boys hockey committee voted to keep its semifinals and finals in Utica, but NYSPHSAA Executive Director Robert Zayas' staff favored the bid by Buffalo's HarborCenter, a sparkling new facility that all but guaranteed a substantial profit by pledging to cover nearly all the costs of the two-day tournament. The NYSPHSAA Executive Committee subsequently voted 16-5 to move the semifinals and finals to Buffalo.
The financial component could be a factor again -- including in some not-so-obvious ways. The 2015 boys tournament attracted 17,993 fans over three days and netted a profit of $160,400 -- by far the association's biggest rain-maker -- for the NYSPHSAA. According to revenue and expense breakdowns reported by the NYSPHSAA at its Central Committee meeting in July, the Glens Falls Civic Center was rented for $38,983. Several weeks earlier, the Times Union Center charged $74,379 to host the NYSPHSAA wrestling tournament -- also a three-day event when the Thursday set-up is factored in.
If the Albany basketball bid comes in with a substantially lower rental fee to compete with Glens Falls, both the NYSPHSAA office and its wrestling committee would have every right to wonder whether they've been paying too much for the convenience of holding past tournaments there.
The 2015 girls basketball tournament in Troy attracted 8,083 fans over three days, turning a profit of $75,238 for the NYSPHSAA. The girls have played at Hudson Valley CC since leaving Queensbury High in 1995.
Authorities investigating: New York City school administrators have launched an investigation into an incident at a Susan Wagner junior varsity football camp, The Advance reported Sunday. Details of what happened remain unclear, but word of the program's young athletes being struck with a broomstick emerged over the weekend, one parent told the paper.
"We have zero tolerance for the type of behavior alleged, whether in our classrooms, on our sports teams or anywhere else. This matter is being taken very seriously and is under investigation," said city Department of Education spokesman Jason Fink, who declined further comment.
Sources told the paper an incident did occur during a seven-day training camp Aug. 19-26 in Copake.
It appeared to be business as usual on the field Monday. When asked if the varsity team would be playing this weekend, coach Al Paturzo, sitting in his school's football office game-planning for the weekend opener, responded, "Where did you find me? That should answer your question."
When asked if both the varsity and the JV contest were still scheduled to be played, Paturzo responded: "As far as I know, yes."
The paper's call to the school's principal and co-ADs were not immediately returned.