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MHSAA Member Schools Will Not Participate
In FOX Sports Net National Football Championship Game

EAST LANSING, Mich. -- In response to an announcement by FOX Sports Net regarding the creation of a national high school championship game in the sport of football, Michigan High School Athletic Association executive director John E. "Jack" Roberts said that member schools will not participate in the promotion which is scheduled to begin at the conclusion of the 2000 season.

MHSAA regulations, which schools adopt as a condition of membership upon joining the voluntary association, prohibit national competition for teams and individuals.

"This organization is opposed philosophically to the concept of a national championship and could site a list of practical problems the concept created in both administration and effect," said Roberts. "We are in a desperate battle to keep high school sports within an educational framework and to avoid the abuses and excesses of other levels of sports. The heart and soul of high school sports is its local flavor. National competition adds nothing but problems we can avoid or long-delay by saying 'no' to playoffs like this."

Roberts added that the management of the regional FOX Sports Net affiliate in Michigan, FOX Sports Net Detroit, which has just completed the first of a three-year arrangement to televise several MHSAA championship events, including football, is aware of the Association's concerns; and of a request to communicate those concerns to national management of FOX Sports Net.