PORTSMOUTH — Simply put, before you fight, the Ohio High School Athletic Association adamantly advises you to first think.
That’s because the OHSAA, in a Monday memo to member schools but more specifically to individual sports coaches, addressed a new penalty for an ejection as a result of fighting — as it pertains to the sports of basketball and soccer.
The Portsmouth Daily Times obtained a copy of the memo for those two sports only.
The OHSAA, as part of its May 20 Board of Directors meeting in which presidents of each coaches association were permitted to attend, made a “General Sport Regulation” change — in which “any student or coach ejected from a contest for fighting will now be ineligible for four games (rather than the previous penalty of two games).”
Fighting is defined by the National Federation of High School Associations “as any attempt by a player or non-player to strike or engage an opponent in a combative manner unrelated to (soccer or basketball). Such acts include, but are not limited to, attempts to strike an opponent(s) with the arm(s), hand(s), leg(s) or foot (feet).”
Along those lines, there was one major change to soccer regulations, as “a soccer player or bench personnel is considered ‘disqualified’ upon receiving a subsequent caution, or ‘double yellow’ (NF Rule 128-2(b)) and shall be ineligible to participate for the remainder of the current contest as well as one subsequent contest of the same level. The player is to remain with the team for the remainder of the contest. A soccer player or bench personnel is considered ‘ejected’ upon receiving a straight Red Card (NF Rule 12-8-3) and shall be ineligible for all contests for the remainder of that day. In addition, the student shall be ineligible for all contests at all levels in soccer until two regular season/tournament contests are played at the same level as the ejection. The player is to remain with the team under the jurisdiction of the head coach for the remainder of the contest.”
There were multiple changes to the basketball regulations, including an increase in the number of quarters permitted per player for both the entire season and per day.
The number of high school quarters ups from 110 to 120 and junior high jumps from 70 to 75, while both levels get an extra quarter a night (from five to six).
In addition, “the non-interscholastic date has been adjusted for all team sports to the first date that regular-season competition is permitted. This means athletes must cease non-interscholastic participation prior to this date.”
For soccer, that date is Labor Day or Sept. 7 (2020) —while for basketball it’s Nov. 20 for the girls and Nov. 27 for the boys.
The OHSAA officially lifted its mandatory dead period on May 26 —which had been in place since March 16 and extended twice since to align with Ohio Governor Mike DeWine’s original order that ALL Ohio schools, both public and private, be closed effective on that date.
DeWine then declared on April 20 that all in-person attendance for the Buckeye State’s schools would be cancelled for the remainder of the (2019-20) academic year, prompting the OHSAA’s original extension of its no-contact period thru May 31.
Ohio Lt. Governor Jon Husted announced that the state and the OHSAA have agreed to allow —starting on Tuesday, May 26 —ALL student-athletes to begin individual skills training at school facilities, BUT at the discretion of individual school districts.
That information was made official in an OHSAA memo on May 21, and included a mention about forthcoming fall eligibility adjustments.
From that May 20 BOD meeting, the OHSAA made bylaw changes, including that “all students entering grades 7‐12 will be eligible for 2020 fall sports insofar as academic eligibility is concerned.”
The OHSAA’s “Compliance Department will continue to monitor and adjust the ‘Scholarship Bylaw’ as needed as schools continue to make determinations on the best ways to educate in the upcoming school year”, as any questions should first be directed toward an individual school’s athletic director — who can then contact the OHSAA Compliance Department if necessary.
The OHSAA also adjusted its Out-of-State Travel Bylaw, which now continues “travel to contiguous states with no limitation. The adjustment was made when traveling to non-contiguous states. It is still a one-time permission per season but previously, you were not permitted to miss school time for travel or competition. This stipulation has been removed and it is now a school decision on whether you may miss school time”.
Other regulation changes which took effect on Monday, and expire after Aug. 31, include elimination of the 10-day coaching rule and the 50-percent limitation rule.
Reach Paul Boggs at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1926, by email at [email protected], or on Twitter @BoggsSports © 2020 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved