It’s time for HS FOOTBALL to get its own GOVERNING BODY

Note: I’ve written a column on this topic for our upcoming preview magazine that will be out on Aug. 29. But given the timing of everything taking place at present, the cliff notes version will be made available here.

Here are some main reasons why football should have its own governing body …

— Rules that apply to other sports should not apply to football because it doesn’t have the same club/travel ball levels of competition to fall back on. In sports like basketball, players cut their teeth with college recruiters at the club level, not high school. With no “club” version of the game to athletes, football players have only Friday nights in fall to make it all happen. So when a player like Noodles Hull or Jake Payton loses an entire season, there’s no way to make it up with a “club” team. And that’s wrong.

The absolute MOST any football player should have to sit out for an athletically motivated transfer or undue influence is THREE GAMES. A basketball or baseball transfer can miss an entire season and be just fine because of “club” or “travel” ball … football players don’t have that same luxury. THE CURRENT RULES ARE WALKING HS FOOTBALL RIGHT DOWN THE PATH TO A CLUB/TRAVEL VERSION OF THE SPORT BEING FORMED. Idiocy!

— Under the current governance, proper league and playoff division placings are done poorly. There’s been ample time to get Monrovia football out of the Rio Hondo League and Mid-Valley Division and nothing has been done. Damien moving to the Pac-5? A special governing body would easily be able to handle the task of making SEPARATE DIVISIONS AND LEAGUES for FOOTBALL.

— Lumping FOOTBALL in with other sports, even just one other sport, is a travesty and should never happen. It’s the most unique season with the most unique risks, so why do we currently have across-the-board rules for all sports, including football?

— This is and isn’t an indictment of CIF. If CIF in some sort of sub-body was in charge of football, I’d have no problem with it. I’m not just talking about putting an assistant commissioner in charge of the sport. I’m talking about a completely different blue book with a completely different set of rules and guidelines that would be made up BY THE NEW GOVERNING BODY and NOT INDIVIDUAL SCHOOLS/ADs/PRINCIPALS/COACHES.

These are just broad strokes and a more compelling case will be made in the full preview column. Thank you and have a wonder life.

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  • Valley Athletics

    Good point . Football is totally different than other sports because the physical toll on your body so that’s why you can’t have year round teams.thats where 7 on 7 teams and camps come in .

  • GP AKA Green Machine

    Wow, Great stuff!

    I totally agree. Because of the current format, the Mtown AD can not risk moving all of the sports programs to higher divisions just for football. The other sports have no shot of winning at a higher level like football does. With the present talent, Monrovia could win the title this year and next year. La Habra is also another school which has won too many titles in the same division, and could win it this year.

    Football is so different because of all the points you brought up. If they had a governing body, the possible could have my dream scenario of creating the football playoff brackets after league has finished. They could take league qualifiers and use the a variation of a Southern Section Ranking system Like Cal preps to form the divisional playoff brackets. I think we would see better games, and comparable teams playing each other.
    That’s just one Idea, but there are so many improvements to be made to the current system.

    • What?

      Hell no on your playoff system. The system your recommending is too similar to the screwed up basketball system. Do you really want the biases of computer based system determining who makes the playoffs and in what division they will be playing? Sounds a lot like the screwed up BCS to me. Teams should know the division they are playing in prior to the season and all league teams should be in the same division so that you have to play your way into the playoffs vs the same opponents that the rest of your league faced. The only thing that needs to be fixed is to eliminate the political structure that puts the leagues together.

  • What?

    CIF will never, nor should they, allow for a separate governing board for football. There are any number of kids in high school that play multiple sports so how would you deal with them? approve a transfer for football and reject the same kid for another sport? There has to be a uniform set of rules for all kids in all sports, if not your just asking for lawsuits of all sorts. I’m with you on the idea of football only leagues and divisions. I also believe that there needs to be an unbiased board of officials within CIF that create the new leagues and divisions. Having Principles and Athletic Directors of the schools vote on re-leaguing is far too political and has very little to do with what is fair.

    • GP AKA Green Machine

      The whole point he is making is that the transfers penalties affect football players differently. You have to look at from the standpoint of the the “Football only” kids. besides on a football team of 50 to100 kids, how many are two sport players? Baseball suits 25 players and basketball a slim 10-15. Very few kids are good enough to play football and make the roster on a basketball or baseball team or Soccer team. You really don’t see too many female transfers in girls sports. Football is at the mercy of the rules unlike the other sports.

      • What?

        The schools are not in the business of trying to get a very small percentage (less then 1% of the student population) athletic scholarships. The schools are in the business of educating 100% of the student population and trying to make the high school experience a fondly memorable one for all those kids on their campus that are interested in extracurricular activities. High schools were not built with the intention to be the minor leagues for College Football, that’s just an unintended side effect. CIF’s goal is to:
        1. Make sure that administrators and coaches don’t get out of hand and lose sight of the main goal of educating the student athletes.
        2. Make sure they create rules that will help to level the playing field so that all student athletes have an opportunity for “fair play”
        Is it a perfect system? no. Will they ever be able to create a system that makes everyone happy? probably not. But I’m sure they will continue to try and tweak it to the best of their ability to make it better. I for one would like to see them start by making the process of re-leaguing to be completed by a board of impartial, experienced CIF officials and to eliminate the political and biased Principles from the process.

      • Don

        GP, there are schools, Bonita being one, who (mostly) draw their football talent from the rosters of other sports especially the basketball, baseball, and soccer teams. There are some full time football guys, mostly linemen, who are training all year for football but when you look at the guys who have put the numbers on the scoreboard these past couple decades you would see guys who often played fallsport as an afterthought.

        Some of these guys, Jeff Chavez, the Horine, Brungard and Zylstra brothers and Garrett Pendleton come to recent memory actually moved away from their first love (soccer, basketball) as well as KC Huth, the Gelalich boys, Jio Mier, and another couple kids (name escapes me now) who played a little baseball, and became football players while at BoHi. Most of the baseball guys returned to full time diamond duty after HS but the other guys never looked back.

        Making a point for football only leagues and divisions would be easy at BoHi as it has been the success of the girl’s teams and boys sports played in the winter and spring, that has kept the school in higher division play. Football success in La Verne only seems to come around every 10 or fifteen years.

        • GP AKA Green Machine

          Even with all the players you named, that is still low. I would asked was they all in the same class? Even if so , a football team averages 50 guys, I would say that maybe 5 are two sports guys. If you take away the track- football combo, that might be even smaller numbers.

          • Don

            Look at four recent years including the epic 12-2 2010 season, the 5-6 in 2007, a 7-4 2008, and the 2009 3-8 stinker. Not talking about kids who ran track here or played any other individual sports, just Boys who contributed on at least two Varsity teams.

            2010’s team who lost to WesCo in the finals had two Horine’s and two Brungard’s along with Pendleton from the roundball team and Gelalich and Huth from the baseball team (also coming off a 1 run loss in the previous year’s CIF baseball final). They also had a new metric providing yardage which included kick
            returns: These seven made up 40% of the scoring and 72% of the total yards.

            The 2009 team had Huth, Sykes, Matt Gelalich, Josh Yepez and Highley from the baseball program, Brungard, Pendleton, and Horine from basketball and Rocha and LeVay from soccer. 67% of the scoring and almost 70% of the passing, rushing, and receiving yardage came from those ten kids, many of whom were all-league with a few all-cif, and all area nods in their “other sport”.

            In 2008 Gelalich, Highley, Paredez, Yepez, Moderow, Huth, (baseball), Rocha, (soccer), Horine, and Pendleton (basketball) accounted for 37% of the points and 49% of the offense.

            In 2007 Mier, Reyes, Highley, Paredez, (baseball), and Zylstra, (basketball), provided 51% of the scoring and about 30% of the yardage.

            Also, guys like Calderero, Moderow, McCanless, Pike and a host of others who didn’t have much in the way of offensive stats because they were linemen or played mostly all D aren’t named here but they were just as important. If you chose to add in the guys who ran track or wrestled you would have a whole other mob in the mix, Johnson and Pike and Gatti and Griffin and
            Calvin and Holmes and Griffith and, well you get it.

    • Not So Fast My Friend

      They may not allow it, but they need it.

  • LM resident

    I second that motion…..

  • Aaron

    Ugh…well they should fix basketball first…where when none of the teams in your league are in the same basketball division completely makes sense…ugh huh.

    In regards to football, I think we have too many playoff divisions. When the MidValley had 6 leagues in it, I liked it. However, I’d rather see 7 leagues with 7 teams in it giving you the top two teams from each league and two at-large teams. That would make it very competitive and tough.

    How to govern football…the blue book should still be in play, however I think the leagues should be separate from the rest of the sports. As you say, Football is different. Because it’s obvious when certain ADs vote to move a school (read: punish for kicking their tushes). And GP…Bonita is a school that relies on dual sport athletes that don’t hang around the stadium for their second sport (read: primary). In regards to a move, the parents need to show cause and have established residence several months before the season, or have notified CIF of the move. Also within that, the move needs to be outside of a certain radius. Can’t be completely arbitrary but 20 miles is a number that makes sense especially when the student is a junior and senior. I knew more than a few people that drove from Rancho to attend Bonita.

    • GP AKA Green Machine

      Two sport Athletes are not that common. If you are talking about a kid that starts in two sports that’s even more uncommon. Since we are talking about high profile kids losing a year, which affects their college aspirations, I think my point is valid. When it comes to transfers etc… How many kids are getting looked at in two sports? That’s rare as well. A kid normally transfers for one sport. If he happens to play two, that’s rare. It would also be rare that a football kid can transfer to another school and make the baseball or basketball team. Especially in their Senior year. You just don’t see that often.

      • What?

        Your out of your mind if you think CIF or any other governing board can legally put forth a set of rules that would apply only to a select group of students and not apply to all students. The lawyers would have field day with any such attempt. And I don’t know about how things are over in Monrovia, but 2 sport athletes are still very common at many high schools especially football/baseball players and football/track athletes with football/basketball players being less common.

        • Prep Fan 29

          I totally agree!

        • GP AKA Green Machine

          Ok, if you say so….

  • disqus_wD2qThRkJd

    Nope! i think a 30 day sit should have been sufficient!

    • Not So Fast My Friend

      30 days is a long time. Too long.

  • Not So Fast My Friend

    Well said and I totally agree.

  • Don

    So your plan to fix what ails high school football is to add ANOTHER layer of bureaucracy to the mix? Swell idea, adding more administration ALWAYS improves ANYTHING. We here in Cali are ALL fans of that kind of thinking. That’s why the DMV always seems to have as many people standing around behind the counter talking to each other as they do serving people in the queue. They are ADMINISTRATING, everyone knows that. Another sterling example would be having TWO taxing entities here in Kalifornia. Who doesn’t agree with how well THAT works

    Now me, I’m more of laissez faire kinda guy, so I’m thinking about LESS interference:

    Transfers: Transfer anywhere, anytime, no penalty, for any reason or no reason. Just leave.

    Just think, mean ole coachie gives little Billy a case of butthurt? Pack up the jock and head on down the road. Junior not getting those reps at the position he played in kiddieball? Later. Make it even more interesting by allowing the little stars to move around anytime during the season. Old team miss the playoffs? Boom! Off to a school that didn’t.

    Leagues and Divisions: Heck, let the coaches make their own . . . kinda like picking a kickball team in the second grade.

    Want to be in a really competitive league? Organize it yourself. Call Bob Johnson an Raul Lara first. Same with Divisions. Wanna be in D1? No problem, just say that’s where you are. See how easy that is? Tired of getting your hass handed to you every year? Sign up for D11 or heck, start a D14 if you want.

    The advantages are endless not to mention all the grist for the blog’s mill, to coin a phrase. Aram and Fred could report stuff about Noodles, the Scobe, and Jake EVERY DAY since that’s how often they’d be jumping ship. WHHHOOOOOOOOO! Hey, when you’ve got game, the sky should be the limit.

    • Colt74

      I vote for Don as the president of the newly formed Football Police. I like the way he thinks.

    • OuttaYourMindTrib

      Man, you’ve GOT to love the DMV ref. That’s some funny chit.

      On a more serious note, we do suffer from over intrusion in the People’s Republik of Kalifornia. It’s seriously out of control.

      I think the AD’s are MORE than capable of getting together and deciding what’s best for THEIR schools rather than CIF. At first there would probably be some serious retribution for past issues but eventually it would iron out and become what it needs to be.

      • What?

        These are the same AD’s that voted to send CO, a team that hasn’t lost a Sierra League game in more then 2 years, down to the Hacienda and to move Ayala, a team that hasn’t been to the playoffs in over 4 years up to the Baseline. Yea, I really trust these AD’s to do what’s right and fair?

        • OuttaYourMindTrib

          Right now, ALL the sports are considered when re-leagung is dealt with. If Football were to be seperate (like Aram is proposing if I’m reading it correctly), I think it would be different. Ayala is strong in most of it’s other sports which hurts football.

          • What?

            If you followed how the voting went earlier this year you would know that the notion that leagues are created for all sports and not just football is bs. Everyone of those Principles and AD’s was positioning themselves with football in mind.
            1. Basketball is irrelevant as far as league goes because it has zero bearing on the playoffs
            2. Nobody but Mom and Dad give a crap about girls sports
            3. and 90% of all the remaining sports are individual sports in nature.
            4 Baseball is the only other sport with any real interest but we all no that nobody looks at baseball when we’re talking re-leaguing.

            re-leaguing is and always has been about football which is exactly why leagues should be developed on a seasonal basis. Fall, Winter, Spring – different leagues for all seasons. with this type of format we could at least fix the basketball bs and have leagues line up with divisions where everyone in your league is in the same division and therefore league means something when it comes to playoffs.

    • WCDan

      Don thats some funny stuff again.

  • Steve Ramirez

    Aram is right. It would make sense for football to have its own organization, similar to what the Southern California junior colleges do with the Southern California Football Association, which is the governing body for JC football in SoCal. The organization rules on infractions, and sets up the conference alignment as well as the playoff format. I like their two-year cycle, where they try to keep the top teams in the top two conferences, giving the schools a chance to compete against like schools. As for the transfer rule, CIF-SS must come up with a more rigid rule. Whatever you decide for the sit-out period, whether it be 3 games, half a season or a full season, spell that out that if you transfer, for whatever reason, you must sit out that time.

  • SGV 4 30 Years


    I agree with a couple of points that you make. First football is unique. It is the only sport with no travel ball or clubs and the season is short. But there are camps and clinics for the players that are considered elite. This whole thing started because you feel sorry for Mr. Hull and Mr. Payton. I really don’t feel sorry for them at all. I My question is why isn’t Diamond Bar and Upland being held accountable. It’s really a no brainer. If this had been basketball or baseball, the outcome would have been exactly the same INELIGIBLE. It wasn’t their transfer, it was the manner and arrogance with which they did it.
    Your idea of a football only commission would make it even worse. Sitting out for 3 games would be worth it for some people. Know if you said they had to sit out 3 league games, that would make people think twice. But you didn’t really address the illegal contact, what would be your penalty for that?
    The idea of football only leagues was purposed at the last re-leaguing meetings. It was shot down. Some schools don’t really want to compete against best. Charter Oak will reap a huge benefit in football from moving to the Hacienda League. They said it would help all their other programs. What they really meant was that their football team will have a chance to be relevant in the play-offs now that they don’t have to play with the big boys.
    The other thing that doesn’t get mentioned is that we are talking about high school kids. We should be talking about their Education first. It seems that the priorities are backwards.

    SGV430 Ouuuuttt!!!!!!

    • Apples and Oranges

      Payton was denied based on undue influence which means someone from Upland was working him and as such CIF needs to punish Upland’s Coaching Staff in some manner. However, Hull was denied because of what his father did, not because of undue influence from DBar.

      • SGV 4 30 Years

        So you don’t think that someone representing DBar was talking to Hull? I’m pretty sure that they didn’t just pull DBar out of their rear ends. Who leaves back to back CIF champions to play some place that hasn’t been to the play-offs in almost 10 years. But you are right about the dad though. It’s like the Canada situation a few years back. I saw Hull play last year. He is an exciting player similar to Thurmond. I’ve never seen Payton.

        SGV430 Ouutttt!!!!!

    • AramT

      Not just Hull and Payton … anyone else past or present who has been cost time by this ridiculous “athletically motivated” rule. They’re just the latest …

  • StrippersAndCoke

    How about we teach kids not to run away from something when they aren’t comfortable. Ban all open enrollment and transfers. Moves have to be out of the attendance area. No appeals, no messes.