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The ticket: What the NCHSAA may vote on this week

The N.C. High School Athletic Association will meet this week at its winter board of directors meeting. Over the last five years, these meetings have mostly come and gone with few hot-topic issues.

We’ve already touched on a few items that you might see come up this week, like which schools will be changing classifications, what will happen to the regular-season PKs in boys and girls soccer, and you might even see something about fights that occur after games

Here are three more items you might see come up when votes are taken.

Introducing Home Campus

The NCHSAA will be officially introducing Home Campus, a database program that schools can use to manage a number of different forms that are required by the NCHSAA each year. Florida is one of the states that already uses the program.

This should be a one-stop-shop for coaches and athletic directors to:

  • report ejections, violations, and infractions
  • determine athletic eligibility
  • manage and report endowment games
  • report transfers and submit waiver requests
  • report conference standings for playoff seeding

Homeschoolers playing in the NCHSAA?

This has been a discussion item for some time, but pump the brakes if you think the NCHSAA is considering the “Tim Tebow rule.” Tebow, who was a Heisman Trophy winner at the University of Florida, was homeschooled in high school and allowed to play for the high school he would have been districted to go to.

The NCHSAA is not considering allowing all homeschoolers to play, just those that are already taking at least two courses at an NCHSAA member school. In some school districts, homeschooled students can take select classes at the high schools. In some districts, they could qualify as “regularly enrolled” students by the NCHSAA, which defines that term as being enrolled for at least one half of the “minimum load,” except there is no current provision that would allow them to play.

If voted on or approved, don’t let the headlines mislead you.

Basically, if approved, some high school students would get the opportunity to play for the school they attend but are not fully enrolled in. Given how the NCHSAA has loosened attendance requirements (allowing each school system to set their own), and the changing world of education (where students who attend public schools, like early colleges and career centers, are allowed to play for a nearby high school which they do not attend), this seems like a natural progression.

New media partner?

I’m not sure how likely it will be that you’d hear anything about a new media partner in this board meeting, but it will at least be discussed. The Sinclair Broadcast Group is in the second year of its two-year deal with the NCHSAA. 

Sinclair has brought the NCHSAA basketball and football championships to over-the-air TV stations in every N.C. market, which is a first. It has also stepped up at a time when the NCHSAA needed a media partner after Spectrum News closed down its sports operations. 

Finding a new media partner with the right broadcasting capabilities and corporate sponsorship will be key moving forward.

#AskJMB

This week’s question: What is your favorite stadium that you’ve been to?

This week’s answer: I think I need to break this up by sport.

For gymnasiums, I’ll list these in alphabetical order: Broughton (in Raleigh), Cary, Durham School of the Arts, Green Hope (in Cary), Hoke County (in Raeford), J.F. Webb (in Oxford), J.H. Rose (in Greenville), Lee County (in Sanford), Mount Zion (in Durham), New Hanover (in Wilmington), Person (in Roxboro), Roanoke Rapids, Western Harnett (in Barbecue).

Western Harnett is on there because it’s where I played. I’ll always have fond memories.

I also loved the old Apex High gym, which has since been demolished.

If you ever get a chance to see a basketball game at Hoke County, do it. I’ve never seen a facility like it. There were very few rows of seating on the sidelines and they had bleachers that bookended the left and right sides of one end zone. Between that seating were chairs for other folks to sit on the floor, and that area led to a stage that sat what seemed like a mile away from the playing floor.

For football/soccer/lacrosse/track stadiums: the new one at Athens Drive (in Raleigh), Cardinal Gibbons (in Raleigh), Cedar Ridge (in Hillsborough), Clayton, Goldsboro, the N.C. School of Science and Math (in Durham), Middle Creek (in Cary), Millbrook (in Raleigh), Richmond (in Rockingham), Sanderson (in Raleigh), Scotland (in Laurinburg), Southern Nash (in Stanhope), St. Pauls (in St. Pauls), Wake Forest, Western Alamance (in Elon). Pine Forest (in Fayetteville) and Chapel Hill have great soccer-specific fields. 

(I should note that Gibbons was one of my favorites before I started working here.)

For baseball or softball stadiums: Douglas Byrd (in Fayetteville), Fuquay-Varina, Lee County (in Sanford), North Lenoir (in Wheat Swamp), Orange (in Hillsborough), South Lenoir (in Deep Run), South Johnston (in Four Oaks), Williams (in Burlington).

J. Mike Blake

J. Mike Blake is an English teacher at Cardinal Gibbons High School in Raleigh and a contributor to HighSchoolOT.com. He covered high school sports for a variety of newspapers in The News & Observer Publishing Company for 10 years and won 14 N.C. Press Association awards. He is also the only two-time winner of the N.C. Soccer Coaches Association’s media person of the year award.