A bid for separate leagues for every sport
The North County principals and three athletic directors are in the process of re-leaguing again. If you missed the last re-leaguing go-round, the powers that be decided to re-league according to enrollment and competitive equity. The previous leagues were aligned by proximity.
When the Valley League was aligned by proximity, the league had four of the five divisions in one league. Escondido was a Division I school and still is the rest of the schools were Division II and Division III schools except Valley Center, a Division IV school. That is not fair, so when re-leaguing came up they made some sensible changes.
Enter high gas prices and a downturn in the economy.
We are up for re-leaguing and it appears that we are going back to the unfair but cheaper way of leaguing.
Schools like Ramona and Valley Center, schools with one comprehensive high school in their district, are at a big disadvantage. The principals at those schools are honest and care only about their students’ welfare and are not swayed by other principals in their district or a school board or superintendant trying to make football powers and save money on football at two other schools in their district.
The next re-leaguing will be different to say the least. Since three schools in the North County Conference do not and will not field football teams, each school will be in two separate leagues. There will be four five-team football leagues. There will also be three leagues for the other sports.
So Ramona High School will be in two separate leagues. If I had a say, they would be in more than two leagues. Read on.
If a district has four schools and only two schools field football teams, then there will be an open enrollment policy in those districts. So schools that already have big enrollments like Torrey Pines and La Costa Canyon can get the football players who would have attended Canyon Crest Academy or San Dieguito Academy (an academy must be a school that does not field a football team in a high rent neighborhood).
The same goes for Mission Vista High School. The principals in those districts are pals and work for the same school board, so they will find a way to scratch each other’s backs at the expense of others.
What strikes me as the biggest irony is the playoff system in San Diego County. The playoffs go by enrollment, supposedly to ensure fair competition. Why is that so important when some schools go an entire season at a competitive disadvantage?
Valley Center will have to play Division I, Division II and Division III schools in league and then they get to play against schools with enrollment similar to theirs. Valley Center can handle it.
What about Crawford and Orange Glen? Everybody got angry when Orange Glen backed out of their rivalry games against Escondido and San Pasqual so that their kids would have a fair chance in two games. Orange Glen’s coach and AD were doing their jobs, looking out for the welfare of their student/athletes. Others should follow suit.
Principals have to practice what they preach. They have to take the student/athletes into consideration when they re-league. Enrollment and competitive equity are more important than transportation cost. Ramona doesn’t transport its student/athletes anyway, so that is a moot argument for us.
Football brings in the money, so you can rest assured that the principals will make those four leagues as equitable as possible.
How about the country club sports? Shouldn’t a tennis player have a chance? How about soccer and wrestling? Shouldn’t competitive equity and enrollment (and they are not the same) be paramount?
I have a unique proposal. How about separate leagues in every sport? It has been done in the Southern Section and it worked. The Southern Sections re-leagues every two years, and competitive equity and enrollments are the two main concerns.
Enrollment is not a constant variable. There’s open enrollment in public schools, but private schools are able to pick and choose their students from all over the county and in some cases other counties and countries.
Competitive equity in individual sports is the fairest way to go. It gives every student/athlete a fair chance. Colleges don’t go by enrollment. Notre Dame only has 10,000 students, less than Palomar College. Competitive equity is what colleges go by.
Hopefully, the committee that is in charge of re-leaguing will put the interest of the student/athletes first on their priority list. My money is on budget interest and not student interests. I hope that I am wrong.
- School sports springing into action for fall
- Ramona finishes eighth in conference
- 2 votes separate Hager, Boetcher for water district’s Division 5 board seat
- Being on any team is an educational experience
- Tennis scores number three seed
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