The word earlier this week out of Florida was that varsity sports schedules are being cut – can Illinois be far behind?
Monday, the Florida High School Athletic Association board of directors reduced varsity games by 20 percent and sub-varsity (JV and freshman) games by 40 percent for the next two school years.
The policy will affect every sport except top moneymaker football, which will allow a maximum of 10 varsity games per school, and competitive cheerleading. Junior varsity football was cut from eight games to six.
Prep football in Illinois, while indeed a big deal, isn’t as big as in Florida or Texas. In fact, I’m not sure the sport would qualify as the same moneymaker as Florida football.
Times like these make you put it all into perspective. Sports are a very important part of high school life. Quality teachers, books and finding the best ways to help the majority of students learn are even more important.
Let’s hope we don’t have to choose from any of them. However, I can see conference realignments as well as sub-varsity teams and schedules being reduced. For instance, in the not-too-distant future, you may see the elimination of the familiar junior varsity-varsity basketball nights at your favorite high school. Instead, those nights might feature a varsity girls basketball game and a varsity boys game. The junior varsity could be eliminated in favor of a freshman-sophomore squad.
Here’s hoping the choices that have to be made don’t hurt the students much. After all, they’re why we do it, right?