Excellent Eric Sondheimer article on 30-day sit-out transfer rule …

Hopefully you guys haven’t used up your free LA Times page views and can actually see this excellent Eric Sondheimer column about the upcoming vote on the 30-day sit-out rule for transfers.

I disagree with Sondheimer’s stance wholeheartedly, but he makes a good argument for his point of view.

Aram’s take:
As you know, I am all for this proposal. In fact, I would take it one step further and drop the 30-day sit out. Just let athletes transfer to their heart’s desire. I don’t believe allowing that would lead to the doomsday scenarios everyone suggests. And I do agree that if this rule passes we’d be going from one extreme (the current rule) to another (30-day sit-out proposal). But this current rule stinks to begin with. It’s been nothing but problems and too many kids have missed all or parts of a season because of it.

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  • Colt74

    The only reason ANY sportswriter would be FOR the new proposal is the fact of the new supply of stories or blog topics it would create.
    I actually read the article before coming here and seeing the reference in your blog ( was looking for a Covina-BP baseball score possibly there because it was not in the trib ).
    Since ES pretty much hit the nail on the head and covered the bases on the evils this would create, I don’t have anything to add to the reasons I’m against.

    I think that CIF could really simplify the proposal by changing it to as each Division Champion can go to all of the schools in their division and take 1 player before the first game of the next season. It will just streamline the process.

    My 2 cents and as always..your mileage may vary….

  • Colt 74,

    While there’s no doubt that this new rule would lead to more transfers and transfers = more stories/blog fodder, that is not the only reason I like it.

    The main reason is because the current rule isn’t practical. It’s poorly imposed and it leads to nothing but hard feelings and accusations all around.

    People should have the freedom to seek greener pastures if they so desire. Athletes have FOUR short years to make a lifetime’s worth of dreams happen. There are no do-overs. Once your HS years are gone, they’re gone. So if a kid and his parents feel his/her chances of success are better somewhere other than the neighborhood school, then they should be free to try it.

    Will it mean programs with good recruiters (asst coaches) will have an edge? Yes. But isn’t that how it kind of is now anyway?

  • Joe Amat

    Here arer a few numbers just for fun (and maybe clear up the misconception that it’s poorly imposed and affects SO many kids)

    12,256 transfers this year in the CIF
    11,621 approved (94.8%)
    513 denied/limited (4.2%)

    122 denied due to 510 “Undue Influence” Violation (1.2%)
    denied/limited (5.2%)

    or 0.08% of all CIF Student/Athletes

    Of those there were appeals 84 appeals and 28 of those were overturned – making the numbers even smaller

    And to get to this point, last school year CIF spent $1.2 MILLION dollars in legal fees/liabilities pertaining to transfers

    Make conclusions as you see fit

  • Colt74

    I agree that the system in place is broken. But then again..that is my view on CIF as a whole. I think it is an outdated, undermanned, one legged man in an ass kicking contest.
    We just rehashed the story of the player that went to 5 different High Schools in 4 years. Now that will be a new story every season for multiple players.
    I get it. I’m an outdated dinosaur. I believe in 1 school..4 years..loyalty..and hard work. I guess I have to get used to 4 sided class rings from now on and the new rule that if you don’t like the hand that you are dealt just take a mulligan.
    My question to you about the greener pastures is where does it end? If they are a multi-sport athlete how many transfers is enough..and when do you find the perfect shade of green?
    I can see it now…a 3 sport athlete going to 12 schools for high school…LOL!
    But we have super PAC’s…might as well have super Schools….

    CIF…take note…Just because you get a flat does not mean that you need to trade in the car…want to fix the system that is in place…BE CONSISTENT…don’t blame the system and throw in the towel.

  • Stop the madness

    Aram, you couldn’t be more wrong. The rules that CIF have in place right now are good rules, they just need to be enforced in a fair and equal manner. The new proposal is all about money. CIF is tied of paying legal fees to defend their decisions. However, this new rule will not stop the lawsuits, Parents will continue to sue CIF because they won’t want to accept even the 30 day “sit out period” portion of the rule.
    My proposal is that:
    1. CIF needs to get legislation passed in Sacramento that makes it illegal for parents and/or schools to sue CIF.
    2. Parents should only be allowed to take their case to binding arbitration and must pay the entire cost of both their legal fees and CIF, win or loose.
    3. CIF needs to bring the hammer down on both Head Coaches and Assitant Coaches for illegal recruiting. Five year suspension from coaching any high school sport for the 1st violation and lifetime ban for any 2nd violation. There should also be the possibility of loosing any other employment these coaches have at the school as well. It will only take a couple of big name coaches getting caught and punished for cheating to put a stop to all of this nonsense currently going on.
    4. Parents and anyone else that provide false documentation to CIF will result in all remaining eligibility of the player being revoked (already in the rule book but never enforced) Again, a few people that are caught cheating are made examples of and the rest of the natives will fall in line.
    Our society is a society of rules and laws. The CIF rules are in place to make for competitive equity in high schools sports and educational stability for the student athlete, which makes for a better high school experience for the majority. Nobody is stopping parents from sending their kids to the school of their choice starting with the kids Freshmen year. The rules also allow for a parent to move their kid (with no move and no penalty) prior to the start of their Soph year, and if you really want to transfer after that you still can, but you must accept the penalty. There are rules in professional sports that restrict the movement of players. There are rules in college that restrict the movement of players. If there was ever a need for rules regarding the movement of athletes, high school, above all else is that place.

  • Desert Rat

    Eric is Rob Wigod’s little puppet. He allows Rob to put his opinion out in the open without being on the record.

    But in this case…I agree with him and don’t like the “manifest destiny” attitude. If schools were free and clear…it would give teams unprecedented amount of talent/wealth and upend what little equity that has been maintained.There has to be some sort of checks and balances to slow the cheaters down.

  • Wailea Beach

    At my High School, I played football,ran track and wrestled. I attended UCLA, received my BA and my MASTERS. I do not think I could of accomplished this without my education! What are you people talking about?

  • Homegrown

    @Wailea Beach
    Are you smoking some of that Maui Wowie? What the hell are you trying to say? and what the is your point?

  • KTLA

    Breaking news! – Scientist have just discovered that BA and Master degrees are only achievable through educational means.

    In other news – It has just been confirmed that water is indeed wet.

    Tune in for further details at 11:00

  • Find waldo

    Hey Aram
    What’s the word on Scoby – Where he at? – you didn’t think we all forgot, did you?

  • Let chips fall where they may

    This rule helps level the playing field between public and private. If kid is paying high tuition, but is not feeling whats going on at the private school, It would be real easy to transfer to a good public school. This rule would hurt up and coming public schools, which would lose players to other public schools, and/or schools in the same league. However, this is a catch 22 because a good player at a good school, who is not playing, would transfer to a school that is going to play him, and not to another powerhouse school where they don’t need him. If he is lucky enough to steal someone’s spot, then that player would leave to school who would play him…so the trickle down effect may not be so bad. Transferring does not mean you are going to go into a better situation. We are under the assumption that every kid transferring is star! Charter Oak had several out of area kids on there team this year, who were all starters and great, but they did not make a dent in the Inland division. If you live the transfers and then you program will die by the transfer. Parents don’t like when their kid is at a school for 3 years, then some hot shot comes in and takes their kids spot. If you have a rep of doing that, then kids and parents who are loyal won’t trust you, and situation will be even worse and you will be effecting the longevity of your program. CO is a perfect example. They used Monrovia, Duarte, and Pasadena kids to win titles, now look at where they are…in the inland Division, without the local talent to get past the 2nd round. So no matter what the rules are, coaches who abuse the rules, and prostitute themselves with different guys every year, will pay. I always say, develop the local kids, starting with being involved in your local youth football program. That’s how you build a program. No matter what the rules are, people will find ways to cheat, or bend them…I say open up the gates and let these coaches ruin themselves and programs.

  • Hype Machine

    There is always a “reason” a kid transfers. Sometimes Transfers don’t help you, they hurt you. There is nothing worse then letting some kid you hardly know into your program. Sometimes the kid is a good kid who just had a issue with a coach, and sometimes the kid is a knuckle head cancer type kid, who would be unhappy no matter where he goes. It’s a gamble, Sometimes chemistry is not worth messing up, for some kid you think may be good. Just because he good over there, does not mean he is going to be good at your school. If CIF keeps the rule the same it’s ok if they change it it’s ok. 99% of the kids how play are not going to get a full ride anyways. You can have all the best players in the world, that means nothing. You have to Have good coaching, eligible players, injury free, and play together to win a title. Transferring, can “help you or hurt you”. It’s not always worth it.

  • Don

    Where are all of these recruiters Sondheimer is talking about? Must be hiding in the menswear cadet section with him and Robledo? The fact is that most parents who move their kid from one school to another, (sometimes more than once), without a change of address do so mostly to reach that ‘holy grail’ of prominence on a successful program. They may be moving from a team that isn’t doing very well or there might be a a kid or two or three ahead of theirs in the depth chart or maybe the coach just doesn’t see eye to eye with Dad or Mom about where Junior ought to play, but mostly, it’s the same old thing. Parents looking for a better deal, (real or perceived), for the kid.

    Yeah there are kids who are pursued, but for the most part, in baseball, and football, and the other sports where club programs don’t cross over, that pursuit is informal and done by other parents or friends of the family: Your son would sure look good in (insert offending school’s name and team colors here). Wink, wink, yuck, yuck. Or, Oh, Johnny isn’t ALREADY starting at QB? Golly, where WE are, he would have been playing as a freshman. Heh, heh, heh. Much more common are parents who band together when the kids are still playing youth sports and decide that their kids would be better of playing together at Bishop Amat or Charter Oak when they are old enough. And what’s wrong with that?

    Also common are those parents who find out after a year or two that their little superstar isn’t up to the challenge of that prominent program they dreamed of and decides maybe the local school isn’t such a bad deal after all. Time to send them back, or, to whatever greener pastures they can turn up. And, of course, what’s wrong with that? I guess that when little Cedric Studbolt goes from a PAC-5 reserve to a D6 star somebody is out of a job, maybe one he thought he had already won. Maybe that’s unfair and maybe it’s just natural selection at work.

  • Excellent post, Don!


    “Much more common are parents who band together when the kids are still playing youth sports and decide that their kids would be better of playing together at Bishop Amat or Charter Oak when they are old enough.”

    Somebody once told me that the biggest recruiters out there are PARENTS.

  • Not A Problem

    This is not a problem if the kid simply attended the school that is the nearest to his residence. But what happens? They want to go to the program that is winning, that has the best coaches, the best facilities, and that gives them the best opportunity to compete, to win, and perhaps to get a scholly. Nobody wants to go to a losing team! I mean nobody does. Look at Bishop Amat! When Amat was winning way back in the ’80s they could recruit who ever they wanted out of the public schools in the SGV. Come to the present and we all know the losing ways of Amat in the last 10 years! Kids want to go to Charter Oak, West Covina, Monrovia, not Amat or Bassett! Nobody wants to go to a losing program. Bottom line!

  • Vote down

    This rule makes it to easy for any kid to transfer because “Johnny” isn’t playing or has a problem with the coach. What are we teaching our kids? Do u quit evertime something doesn’t go your way?

    Don’t think this the true concept of a student/athlete.. This just creates more of the “I” guy and god knows there’s pently of them…

    Sorry Aram just don’t agree on this one!

  • Vote down

    This rule makes it to easy for any kid to transfer because “Johnny” isn’t playing or has a problem with the coach. What are we teaching our kids? Do u quit evertime something doesn’t go your way?

    Don’t think this the true concept of a student/athlete.. This just creates more of the “I” guy and god knows there’s pently of them…

    Sorry Aram just don’t agree on this one!

  • Colt74

    Just remember…..the new catch-phrase is…

    There is no “TEAM” in “PRIMA DONNA”……

  • Unreal. I just saw Fred Roggin dedicate part of his sports cast on the Ch. 4 news to this topic. He basically recited Sondheimer’s points.

    Everyone has their own take on this, but I’m getting kind of sick of the “the floodgates are gonna open” and “everything’s gonna be ruined” arguments.

    Yeah, things really sucked in the 90s, didn’t they? You know, when there were still asses in the seats. The haves and have nots were still pretty much the same as they are now.

  • Coach O

    I guess the point everyone is missing here is that it is not the 90 days that is important, it is October 1. That is the first day a transfer would be eligible to participate for football. In most cases you are talking the first league game. As a former high school coordinator, there is no way I would supplant a five game starter for a transfer that may be more talented or “d-1.” I am sure other coaches would disagree, however unless I have a huge hole at a position or my team is losing and I really dont see potential to win a league,I wouldn’t make that change. Last season Westlake was playing Oaks christian, Bishop amat against venice, south hills-los osos. This year San Gabriel plays Schurr in league opener after oct 1. Are you really going to start that highly touted qb transfer for that game? I say let it go and some parents will test it but not like the free for all everyone believes will happen. yes it is absolutely the parents that drive transfers. most players have friends and bonds with teammates and players they have played with since pop warner or elementary school and dont want to leave them. I cant see many parents taking the chance on sitting out 5 games to see if their kid starts at a big time program. if anything i think it will be the opposite and players will transfer OUT of the big time programs to a place they can start in league and get playing time. In that scenario it would be a good rule to allow that player a chance to play out his senior year when he sees no chance at playing time.

  • Vote Down

    Colt 74


    Aram the 90’s are done and over. Different climate now days!

  • Desert Rat


    If you’re living back to the 90’s…take the jump into reality.

    The climate of recruiting in high school sports – especially football and basketball – aren’t the same they were over a decade ago. You didn’t have some of these fly by night operations (emphasis basketball) and these privates like Oaks, Crespi, Notre Dame, Chaminade, Sierra Canyon, etc. out there plucking kids out of other schools and scouting others in youth ball. You can’t tell all will be fine when you have high schools as far as the San Fernando Valley and that one in Westlake Village driving up to our dust bowl, knocking on families door and selling their kids on their programs, errr school.

    In all do respect, I don’t think you have the slightest clue what is really going or you plainly don’t care.

    I mean we’re talking high school sports and you feel it’s alright for kids to traded on an open market? What message are we sending. What are we teaching our kids when we tell them, “forget the commitment you gave to someone/something else and just pick up your Legos and go where you will win. Go where everyone will prop you up and inflate your ego because in the end Johnny, forget your TEAM, its all about you.”

    I mean let’s just throw it all out the window so some middle-aged coach can say he won a league, CIF or state title. Big f***ing deal. We’re here to teach and develop young men and young women. That is what every coach SHOULD be striving. Everything else is secondary.

  • Colt74

    Once upon a time….

    Little Johnny brought home the required permission and insurance forms to play football for his high school. The parent(s)read and signed the forms and Little Johnny was now entrusted to the coaches and players to help form and mold him into a productive ( hopefully ) team player. In the process he learned ( hopefully ) the values of hard work and what it was like to be part of and to work with his team. He learned that each person on the team has to do their part for the team to succeed.
    Little Johnny also knew that he had a big test coming up in Algebra and that he has 2 weeks to study for it. Little Johnny understood he had to keep up his grades to be able to play football.


    It’s 9:30 AM and Little Johnnys dad is on the phone to the football coach to talk to him about how the coach is not properly utilizing his son in certain situations. More carries or more passes to Little Johnny is what the team needs he instructs. And if the coach won’t listen..well there is always ( insert school name here ). Little Johnny also has that big Algebra test today so his dad makes a mental note to drop by the school to sign him out for a “dental appointment” before math class. That way little Johnny has the whole week-end to get hold of his classmates and to try and find out what was on the test so he can do better when he takes the make up exam. Dad and Little Johnny laugh as the drive home and discuss how the sun rises and sets on Little Johnnys ass and how smart they are to be able to manipulate the system. And so what if Little Johnny does poorly on the make up exam? Dad will just make another phone call.
    It’s all about doing what is best for your child.

    And over evening dinner and drinks Mr and Mrs Little Johnny discuss talking to the coach about how the schools uniform colors clash with the color of little Johnnys eyes…Johnnys dad makes a note on his iphone to call the coach in the morning to discuss this…

    So much better now than in the 90’s……

  • Me myself and I

    @Colt 74
    Hammer – Nail – Bang!

  • Sounds good to me!

    This is the first comment posted on this article. I’ll comment after.

    BLC19662012 at 10:36 AM April 19, 2012
    “I tweeted this thought, but since I only have six followers, I thought I’d post it here too! I’d like to see the transfer rule incorporate a post season, but not a regular season ban. For example, a student-athlete would be eligible to play in the regular season of the first year of transfer, but would not be able to play in the post season. This would deter the “buying championships” mentality. It still allows students to enjoy the great tradition of playing for their high school.

    A 30-day ban is silly – it’s no ban at all. The flood gates will open. I don’t see it as a private vs. public school thing, rather a “good program” vs. “bad program” thing. The good programs would become stronger, the bad programs much weaker. At any rate, a 30-day ban isn’t a reasonable solution.”

    Sounds good to me. Coaches are forced to develop and play thier loyal four year veterans for playoffs. Because its all about championships! Transfers get to suit up and chip in just for Aram. Because “too many kids have missed all or parts of a season because of it.” Not all schools go to playoffs Aram. And most importantly get the greener pasture education. Thats why they transfer to begin with right! As for the my kid is to big a stud to be here. Or the let me find you a better fit mijo parents. Missing playoffs every year will get old. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not hating on the tranfer idea. It’s just the abuse thats ridiculous. This will definately curb that a whole lot.
    Ok Aram, what’s your take?

  • show me the grades

    Show me a 3.5 gpa or better to be considered for a transfer. These kids should be students first with good grades, then atletes. why reward a parent/child with mediocre grades.

  • Wake up

    I wonder why people care what other people are going to do? What matters is what you and your child are going to do. If you don’t believe in the transferring, don’t do it. If you are not happy with your kids situation explore your options. A lot of people base their decision on what others are going to do. Always checking to see who is going to play here or there. If you look at how many kids transferred, where they transferred, and if that team won a title, Evidence shows that nothing is a lock. There are tons of talented players who earn full rides at 0-10 schools just like 14-0 schools. If your child is good, the scouts will find out and recruit. If your child is not good, the scouts won’t recruit. There are plenty of kids with 2 or 3 rings and no scholarship offers. WAKE UP! You do control your own destiny, however it’s how your child prepares during his prep years. If people payed as much attention to the important things like stretching, working out, proper diet, Academics, and responsibility for their own performance, as they do to transfer issues, their kid may just play on Saturdays…your kid is not a lock to start/play at PCC, Citrus, or Mt Sac, let alone a 4 year college. So why parents spend four years prostituting themselves around town is deplorable…This rule is not going to earn 1 player a ride who did not work and earn it themselves on the field.

  • AMAT 73

    That is a spot on post by Don , but I think you missed a sentence that truely hits the nail on the head . It started the next paragraph on when said parents find out their little superstar is considered just a team memember with no special treatment and can’t crack the line up at said schools is when the musical chairs begin on find a program to fit the superstar’s needs of the spotlight on Friday nights on him instead of being under the spotlight that hits the total team . The majority of the parents that send their kids to AMAT know what’s in store for them and ride out the 4 years which I imagine is true for the majority of the CO folks also .

  • Amat 73,

    The majority of parents stick it out no matter what school you’re talking about. But let’s not forget that thru the years Amat has lost plenty of kids who went on to have fantastic seasons in other places — Jesse Ramirez, Matt Castaneda, Dorian Wells, Dorrin Turner, soon to be Hauser at CO.

    CO has also lost kids to other places, too, i.e. Alex Hernandez now at Damien and of course Scoby.


    Name me ONE school, JUST ONE, that if this new rule passes will suffer a doomsday scenario. I’m talking about a school that is good NOW but will be totally RUINED if this rule passes. I GUARANTEE you that you won’t be able to do it. With this rule in place, the Valley’s HAVES and HAVE NOTS will remain virtually the same. It’s just that some of the HAVES will be even better in certain years. But overall, the pecking order will remain the same.


    What I find amazing is people like Colt74 talk about the way it was and the way it is. When Colt74 has no clue how it was. If he attended the real football programs like Los Altos, Bishop Amat, West Covina or Charter Oak then just maybe he would have some ideal of what went on in the 70’s and 80’s. Those Los Altos teams of the 70’s and 80’s dominated because of Despain being the master of the transfers. The reality of it is the risk of transferring today is far greater than in the 70’s and 80’s. It was so easy back then, as easy as “I want to be in a program that my local school didn’t provide”, APPROVED.

    Even today as the stats have shown very few of the transfers are denied. The real difference here is the media putting just about ever transfer in blast mode on these blogs.

  • Transfers

    Background on transfers

    Jesse Ramirez- Missed practices and grades were bad

    Matt Castaneda-Wanted to play QB for two years on Varsity

    Dorian Wells-Broke school rules or would have stayed

    Dorrin Turner-Left as a Freshman so who knows

    Hauser- Didn’t want to turn in his grade report, follow team policies.

    Colt74 hit the nail on the head!

  • Colt74

    I’m so glad there are fools like you around that want to tell me what I know and don’t know. Let some air out of your head..it’s about to explode.

    Not ONE person transferred out of Covina because they did not start while I was there 4 years. Not one.
    I guess that is old fashioned integrity. Oh that’s right..we were not a real football program. Prima Donnas are only at real football schools.

    And what went on with another school during my time affected me how again? But if you are trying to state that transfers to multiple schools was more prevalent back then..then you sir are not only a fool, but an ignorant fool.

    yeah..never heard of Hertel,Sproul,Benton..never suited up against them either…
    and slick…back in the 70’s NO ONE was calling Charter Oak a real football school….

    So to summarize….you are a fool. And you just got served.

  • Colt74


    “Real” football programs in SGV by year ( 70-74 )IMHO
    70- Bishop Amat
    71- Bishop Amat, West Covina
    72- Los Altos
    73- NONE
    74- NONE

    Tell me again when before 1985 Charter Oak was even an also ran? Royal Oak was 20X better than Charter Oak back then….for that matter so was Edgewood.

  • Early 70;s

    Actually it was:
    70 – Amat
    71 – Amat
    72 – St Paul
    73 – Los Altos
    74 – South Hills
    76 – Los Altos
    77 – Los Altos



    I stated 70’s and 80’s not 70’s, nice try.

    What you had no valid response so you change the varibles and then respond.

    That is weak !!!!!!

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