New York State Sportswriters Association   
→ Rankings
NYSSWA rankings are updated weekly.
See the latest plus the earlier weeks'
updates on our rankings page.

→ User tools


Monday, May 9, 2016: Catching up on some recent reporting

   Leading off today: There was a lot of news to report last week with the announcements of the girls basketball all-state team, the NYSPHSAA Hall of Fame inductees, all sorts of lacrosse matchups and the great news that Syracuse Corcoran coach Jim Marsh is set to make a comeback.

   Still, there was lots of other writing and reporting that I didn't want to see get lost in the shuffle.

   Foremost among them was the story about community support coming together for Liam Frawley, 47, the Tappan Zee athletic director since 2005. An aneurysm burst in Frawley's brain Jan. 25 and he spent almost two months at Westchester Medical Center before being transferred to another facility in Haverstraw for rehabilitation.

   Frawley is VP and chairman of professional development for the New York State Athletic Administrators Association. In that role he helped revamp the state system for accrediting coaches to make it easier to attract people to the vocation.

   Doctors are still working to control the pressure in his head, and Frawley has stomach issues. Nancy Haggerty reported in The Journal News that he is having stomach issues and relearning how to swallow and speak.

   Now, the community is beginning to rally around the family behind the "Frawley Strong" rallying cry. There are plans to sell Frawley Strong bracelets, T-shirts and more, and a four-hour fundraiser is slated for June 12 in Blauvelt.

   Donations for an auction are pouring in to help defray substantial long-term bills for the family.

   Pulling her life together: Before there was Nicole Kaczmarski, Tina Charles or Breanna Stewart, there was Chamique Holdsclaw. The Christ the King star was twice selected Gatorade's state player of the year in the mid-1990s before a stellar career as a Tennessee Vol and superb start to her pro career.

   And then it fell apart as Holdsclaw began losing her battle with depression. She went public with news of her condition in 2004, was rushed to the hospital for a suicide attempt in 2006 and retired during the 2007 season.

   More well-documented troubles followed and in November 2012 she once again contemplated suicide.

   USA Today recently caught up with Holdsclaw to update her story, and the news is encouraging. She agreed to participate in a documentary to help share her story and has been reaching out to people who've been positive influences in the past. She's also speaking publicly to groups to encourage those needing help to get it.

   "I'm just really happy," she said. "Someone asked, 'Would you come back and play?' and I'm like, 'No.' This is me, this is who I wish I would have been before."

   Transfer rule redux: The Journal News looked ahead to September 2017, when the NYSPHSAA's transfer rules extend to varsity-level junior high athletes. Seventh- and eighth-graders who participate in a high school-level sport and then enroll in a new school as a freshman will be subject to the same rule that already can cost older athletes a year of eligibility.

   Athletic directors told the paper the rule could affect more girls than boys by a ratio of 2-to-1 or greater because it's typically young female athletes who develop quickly enough to compete in varsity sports before ninth grade.

   "There are so many girls who are fully grown in eighth grade," said Pat Buckley, the Albertus Magnus girls basketball coach. "They don't change much over the next four years physically."

   The story also begins to delve into the implications for private schools and the parents considering enrolling their children there after previously attending public schools.

   Still an uphill battle: Larry Chavez was experienced culture shock when he became AD at 2,400-student Cleveland High in Rio Rancho, N.M., and saw volleyball teams with far more freshmen than upperclassmen as juniors and seniors joined the specialization trend and only played one sport a year.

   So Chavez created incentives for multisport athletes in 2014. Freshmen and sophomores who played more than one sport received custom T-shirts, juniors earned a unique multisport patch for their letter jackets and seniors received a watch.

   The program cost the school less than $4,000, and Chavez said it had been met with enthusiastic support from students.

   "I just feel that with kids, they only have one chance in high school; they only have three or four years of high school experience," Chavez told The New York Times. "And by them being forced, by either high school coaches, parents or club coaches, to specialize so early, I think it's hindering their development, and I think that's why there's such a high rate of burnout for our kids."

   Still, it's an uphill battle. This year's multiple-sport participants include 85 freshmen but dips to 62 sophomores, 45 juniors and 27 seniors.

   The paper reports that the Michigan High School Athletic Association has created a task force to come up with practical methods of increasing multisport participation. Jack Roberts, the executive director, said he hoped the task force showed that the issue of specialization was a "public health crisis."

→ Recent blogs and news     NYSSWA RSS feed
  • 10/17: Section 5, hoops refs locked in dispute
  • 10/17: Grand Island's league streak ends
  • 10/16: DeLyser sets U.S. career goals mark
  • 10/15: Pearl River player dies in accident
  • 10/14: Weekly New York City football recap
  • 10/13: F-M girls win again at Manhattan Inv'l
  • 10/13: 50-yard FG lifts Burke Catholic to win
  • 10/12: DeLyser 3 goals from national record
  • 10/12: Orchard Park rallies past Lancaster
  • 10/12: Recap of the NYSPHSAA meeting
  • 10/11: Bethlehem girls storm back to win
  • 10/9: NYSPHSAA quarterly meeting preview
  • This Site

    ©2007-19 Abbott Trento Online Media. All rights reserved. Contact us via e-mail.

    → Twitter
       Get all the latest:

    Follow the NYSSWA on Twitter

    Road To Syracuse H.S. football in New York   Ten Man Ride H.S. lacrosse in New York
    Road To Glens Falls boys H.S. basketball in N.Y.   Road To Troy girls H.S. basketball in N.Y.