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EAST LANSING, Mich. – Aug. 23 – Responding to requests from athletic administrators at its member schools to provide tools to assist them in the day-to-day operation of their sports programs, the Michigan High School Athletic Association and AbriterSports have reached and agreement in principle to develop a software package which will allow schools to manage the entire process locally while being integrated with the MHSAA’s systems to create a single-entry solution.
The new product – ArbiterGame – will empower athletic departments to schedule games, manage teams, create rosters, arrange transportation, change venues and times, send notifications, see officiating crews, pay referees and other game staff electronically, communicate with other schools, and to track the entire process online. The program will also connect to the MHSAA’s administrative systems and allow for scores and schedules to be updated with a single input from schools.
“Increasingly over the past two years, the MHSAA office has overheard athletic administrators’ concerns regarding the electronic administrative tools they purchase; and increasingly there have been requests for the MHSAA office to provide tools so integrated with MHSAA systems that a single entry would perform tasks for both local and MHSAA needs, and all would be in an environment free of objectionable advertising and editorial content,” said John E. “Jack Roberts, executive director of the Association. “In return, our staff, often in consultation with local athletic directors and their administrative assistants, have been investigating a proper response. For many months we researched the development of these tools ourselves; but in more recent months we concluded that it was more likely we could deliver product to schools sooner and less expensively by joining forces with Arbiter Sports in this project than by going it alone.
“Collaborating with ArbiterSports and participating in the design of its new product – ArbiterGame – will provide us the opportunity to assist schools with the local needs and their communication with the MHSAA; and do it in a more cost-effective manner for schools given the economic challenges they face,” Roberts continued. The MHSAA is the flagship association with ArbiterSports for this product.
"ArbiterSports delivers tools that streamline the entire process of holding athletic events,” said Claire Roberts, Chief Executive Officer of ArbiterSports. “With the addition of ArbiterGame, our clients will be able to manage and track almost every task associated with organizing a sporting event, all from a single platform. We are excited to work with MHSAA and believe its input will help us create an industry-leading game scheduling product that meets the demands of school athletic departments in Michigan and around the country."
A core set of tools will be available for school use in the Spring of 2012 to get schools ready for the 2012-13 school year, and the complete suite will be available in the Spring of 2013; and will be the only such program available that will be fully integrated with MHSAA data and systems. Athletic Directors from around the state will be closely involved throughout the duration of the development to ensure their needs are fully understood and addressed. Roberts added that the cost to schools will be largely subsidized – if not fully paid – by the MHSAA for each member schools for at least several years.
ArbiterSports, part of the NCAA Spectrum, is the leading provider of end-to-end referee management solutions, helping sports leagues dramatically simplify the process of assigning officials and paying participants. The product suite, which includes ArbiterOne, ArbiterWorks, Arbiter360, ArbiterConnected and RefPay, delivers unprecedented control and visibility over the entire game management process. Built on a powerful web-based system allowing secure access from anywhere, the ArbiterSports Platform provides seamless integration and easy-to-add features for clients ranging from 8 to 112,000 officials. Sports associations, commissioners, assigners and game officials rely on ArbiterSports to do their jobs more effectively. Visit arbitersports.com or call 1-800-576-2799 today for more information.
The MHSAA is a private, not-for-profit corporation of voluntary membership by over 1,500 public and private senior high schools and junior high/middle schools which exists to develop common rules for athletic eligibility and competition. No government funds or tax dollars support the MHSAA, which was the first such association nationally to not accept membership dues or tournament entry fees from schools. Member schools which enforce these rules are permitted to participate in MHSAA tournaments, which attract approximately 1.6 million spectators each year.