A change in format for the Boys Basketball Finals highlighted actions taken by the Representative Council of the Michigan High School Athletic Association during its annual Fall Meeting, Nov. 30 in East Lansing.
Mirroring closely the format of the MHSAA Girls Basketball Finals, the Boys Finals will move this season from three to two sessions. The first session will tip off with the Class D Final at 10 a.m., followed by the Class A championship game. The second session will begin tentatively at 4:30 p.m. with the Class C Final and conclude with the Class B title game.
Previously, the Class A and B Finals were separate sessions, with the Class A Final tipping at 4 p.m. and Class B at 8 p.m. The change will make for a shorter day for spectators wishing to attend all four games, and also allow them to do so by purchasing tickets for two sessions instead of three.
The Fall Meeting also saw the addition of two members to the 19-person council. Reese Public Schools athletic director Dave Derocher began a two-year term after being elected earlier this fall to represent Class C and D schools in the northern Lower Peninsula. Orlando Medina, who serves as athletic coordinator for Harrison Township L’Anse Creuse Public Schools, was appointed for a two-year term. He also previously served as athletic director at Detroit Cesar Chavez Academy. They fill positions formerly held by Beal City superintendent William Chilman IV and Romulus High School athletic director Mark Woodson, whose terms ended.
Also, Carmen Kennedy, principal at St. Clair Shores South Lake High School, was reappointed for a second two-year term. The Representative Council is the legislative body of the MHSAA. All but five members are elected by member schools. Four members are appointed by the Council to facilitate representation of females and minorities, and the 19th position is occupied by the Superintendent of Public Instruction or designee.
The most prominent points discussed at the Fall Meeting were risk minimization for athletes and possible strategies for making school sports safer. Among topics discussed were raising expectations for coaches’ participation in online safety courses and schools’ management of heat illness; the possible restructuring of practice policies in regards to hot weather; and game rules revisions to enhance safety especially in football, soccer and ice hockey.
The Council reviewed its previous actions on those topics, including discussions in December 2011 that led to the inclusion of health and safety content in online rules meetings. Council members considered a model policy for managing heat and humidity, and also a number of ideas collected during Fall Update meetings with administrators throughout the state.
No action was requested on those items at the Fall Meeting. Complete and vetted proposals are likely to be considered when the Council next meets in March and then May.
PHOTO: Outgoing Representative Council members Mark Woodson of Romulus (left) and William Chilman IV (right) are presented plaques for their service by MHSAA Executive Director Jack Roberts (middle) during the Fall Meeting.