HS Summer Practices Underway

The three-week summer practice period is underway for high school teams throughout the state.  Out-of-season coaching is only permitted during weeks 50-51-52 of the National Federation Standardized Calendar. This year’s summer practices will run through July 2nd.

The three-week practice session was first put in place back in 2003 by the WVSSAC and executive director Gary Ray says it’s been well received over that period.

“It’s been very beneficial for our schools. I think our coaches have worked very well with it.  I think overall, they see the benefit for their programs,” Ray said.  “With the majority of our schools, the coaches have worked together when it comes to sharing time with the students.

“We feel it’s a productive time where they can work with kids in general – it’s open to all students in the population of their school,” he continued.

Meanwhile, the 2010-2011 high school athletic season is in the books as the state baseball tournament wrapped up earlier in the month.  Overall, it was a year that certainly wasn’t without a bit of controversy.  And Ray said they’re glad to be able to move on from the brawl on the football field this past year between South Charleston and Hurricane, which caused a considerable amount of drama in the weeks following.

“I think we’ll grow from that,” Ray said.  “We’re working on our member schools when it comes to next football season.  We hate anytime something like that occurs, however we will prepare for the coming year and I think it’s going to be an exciting time.”

And with the summer months now officially in, Ray said there’s still plenty he and his staff are working on.

“People think a lot of times we have the summer off – and it’s to the contrary,” Ray said.  “As soon as the spring season is over with, we’re in the process of preparing for the fall.  We’re putting our coaches and officials’ packets together, we’ve got our rule books we’re mailing out and we’re working on our plans for the fall.  Also starting the last of July, we hit the ground running with rules clinics around the state.”

And of course, there are the new realignment figures that will be set in the fall for the 2012-2013 academic year.

“I’ll collect that in October – towards the end of October we’ll take some time to put the numbers together and we’ll give it to a mathematician to give us some natural breaks and their recommendation,” Ray said.  “I present those numbers without the schools listed to the board of directors.  And at that point, through our recommendation and whatever they consider, they’ll make the final determination on the cuts for AAA, AA and A schools.”

A new rule proposal – if accepted by the state board – would change the process just a bit from in the past.  Instead of counting students through grades 9-11, the new alignment figures would include students from grades 9-12.

The current cut off lines in effect right now are at 337 students for Class A, 618 for Class AA and 619 or more for Class AAA.  Parkersburg had the largest enrollment in the state during the last realignment period with 1,446 students in grades 9-11.

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