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

John Moriello's NYSSWA blog
Sunday, Feb. 1, 2009: Cuts to regular-season schedules draw wrath of coaches, administrators
   Leading off today: Frustrated coaches and administrators are sounding off, but the bottom line is that cuts approved Friday and Saturday by the NYSPHSAA's Executive Committee could have turned out much worse for New York high school athletes — and still might.

   The headline-grabber yesterday when the New York State Public High School Athletic Association announced its actions was that regular-season sports schedules were being shortened, generally cutting from two to four games from the length of the season.

   Though that will affect literally every school in the organization, decisions that have been left for the future could have at least as big an impact. The Executive Committee opted to take no action on a proposal that could end "open" sectional tournaments and another restructuring the scheduling of scrimmages, but two other proposals that could reduce the number of state tournament classes as well as cut the number of competitors within the remaining classes have been referred to the Championship Advisory Committee, meaning they remain in play for a vote in May.

   Some other changes that were approved — a proposal to consider central locations for early-round state tournament games, a moratorium on the expansion of existing NYSPHSAA tournaments and the decision to staff some regional playoffs with officiating crews from the host section — aren't garnering anywhere near the attention that the cuts to regular-season schedules got Saturday after the announcement.

   Here's a sampling of what people are saying:

   Grand Island AD Jon Roth: "I really donít know what two or four contests is going to do for anybody. I donít think they should penalize the kids. I know cuts have to be made somewhere, but cutting games is not the answer.Ē

   Section 2 football chairman Gary VanDerzee: "In all honesty, football made out the best of all of them. It's just a horrible, horrible decision, made by people afraid to make the decision in their own (leagues or sections).

   Section 2 boys soccer chairman Jim Gillis: "I'm not surprised by this, but I think it is absurd. There are other things that could have been done state-wide, section-wide and league-wise that could have avoided cutting of games. Unfortunately, we weren't given that opportunity. We had no say in these moves."

   Section 2 baseball chairman Al Roy: "I know when we just had a baseball meeting, everyone felt this is something that leagues, sections and individual schools should address. This vote seems like a knee-jerk reaction."

Also worth checking out
  • Boys basketball page
  • 2008 all-state football team
  •    Section 4 interscholastic sports coordinator Ben Nelson: "I'm not really surprised they reduced the number of games, it just doesn't make a lot of sense to me, or to most of the AD's (in Section 4)."

       More on the meeting: Also in Binghamton, the Executive Committee OK'd using three referees for regional and state tournament play in boys basketball. The costs will be offset by using the "standby official" as the third ref.

       And a plea from me: As long as we're cutting two games from the regular season for boys lacrosse, can we please change the format for the last three rounds of the state tournament to a Saturday-Wednesday-Saturday format? Squeezing the quarters, semis and final into a Tuesday-Thursday-Saturday format is murder on coaches, ADs, media, parents and — oh, yeah — the athletes themselves.

       Final thought: I believe a lot of good people were trying to do the right thing when they got involved in this process, and the financial issues they sought to address are very real.

       However, when we look back at this weekend's decisions a year or so down the road I think we're going to come to the realization that the single most significant action taken — cutting regular-season schedules — was a decision that should have been left in the hands of the respective sections after significant discussion at the league level.

       Meanwhile, the issues that really are topics for statewide discussion — adjusting state tournament classes and formats — have been put off for another day.

       Saturday hoops highlights: Rochester East senior guard Jerrold Brooks, fresh off 41- and 45-point games in the past two weeks, poured in 50 yesterday during a 109-75 victory against Syracuse Corcoran in the RAP Invitational at East. Brooks, who shot 18 of 24 from the field, also had 11 assists and seven steals for the Orientals (13-4).

       Dane Miller scored 20 points with 14 rebounds and four assists as Class AA No. 6 Rush-Henrietta edged No. 20 Syracuse CBA, 59-53.

       Bishop Kearney, ranked No. 1 in Class B, broke out to a 17-2 lead and held off Class A No. 19 Aquinas, 55-50. Patrick Coyle scored 10 points and grabbed 12 rebounds for the Kings (11-2).

    Read previous blog entries from John Moriello. | Send us an e-mail. | Subscribe to RSS feed.

    → Recent blogs and news     NYSSWA RSS feed
  • 5/27: Football gets approval to add a game
  • 4/29: Officials turning focus toward the fall
  • 4/23: Boys all-state basketball (large schools)
  • 4/22: Westhill hoops star dies in crash
  • 4/16: Boys all-state basketball (small schools)
  • 4/8: LuHi girls coach Slater steps down
  • 3/24: NYSPHSAA ends winter sports season
  • 3/18: Davis, Poole capture BCANY honors
  • 3/18: Weekly NYC boys basketball recap
  • 3/13: Dutchess Co. teams idle until April 30
  • 3/12: A day unlike any other in H.S. sports
  • 3/11: Coronavirus hits hockey, hoops plans
  • 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.