By John Johnson
MHSAA communications director
The first High Definition video streams by a participating school lead a list of more than 50 sporting events on MHSAA.tv this week being produced by its School Broadcast Program.
Haslett High School streamed live HD video of its boys basketball game with Okemos on Tuesday and will do so for its game against Saginaw Nouvel on Feb. 10, utilizing its new in-school fiber network connections from its gymnasium to its production control room for the first time. Haslett joins a short list of schools in the SBP which run fiber from their event facilities to a control room in another wing of the building where video production classes are taught.
Most schools haul all of their production equipment to the venues for their video broadcasts. Now at Haslett, cameras, audio connections and intercom communications will simply be plugged into network jacks, replacing long snakes of cable runs around a performance venue. In addition to the fiber connections at the gym and football stadium, the school’s Performing Arts Center also is connected by fiber to the control room.
The School Broadcast Program gives members an opportunity to showcase excellence in their schools by creating video programming of athletic and non-athletic events, with students gaining skills in announcing, camera operation, directing/producing and graphics. The program also gives schools the opportunity to raise money through advertising and viewing subscriptions.
Here’s the schedule of School Broadcast Program members planning to cover varsity competition over the next week for broadcast at MHSAA.tv (as of Feb. 2). The following events will have live streaming video unless otherwise indicated:
Thursday, February 5
Girls Basketball – Mt. Morris at Montrose, 5:30 p.m.
Boys Swimming & Diving – Grand Ledge at East Lansing, 6 p.m. (VOD)
Girls Basketball – Whittemore-Prescott at Hillman, 7 p.m.
Girls Basketball – Bellaire at Indian River Inland Lakes, 7 p.m. (VOD)
Girls Basketball – Alanson Littlefield at Mackinaw City, 7 p.m.
Girls Basketball – Mancelona at Onaway, 7 p.m. (VOD)
Girls Basketball – Hillman at Posen, 7 p.m.
Girls Basketball – Oscoda at Rogers City, 7 p.m. (VOD)
Boys Basketball – Mt. Morris at Montrose, 7 p.m.
Girls Basketball – Fairview at AuGres-Sims, 7:15 p.m.
Friday, February 6
Wrestling - O-K Conference Blue Tournament at Comstock Park, 5 p.m. (Comstock Park, Allendale, Belding, Coopersville, Sparta, Grand Rapids West Catholic)
Wrestling – Quad at Pinconning, 5:30 p.m. (Pinconning, Standish-Sterling, Bay City John Glenn, Tawas)
Boys Basketball – Johannesburg-Lewiston at Indian River Inland Lakes, 7 p.m. (VOD)
Boys Basketball – Boyne Falls at Mackinaw City, 7 p.m.
Boys Basketball – Bellaire at Mancelona, 7 p.m.
Boys Basketball – Paw Paw at Dowagiac, 7 p.m.
Ice Hockey – Port Huron Northern at Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook Kingswood, 7:15 p.m.
Saturday, February 7
Girls Competitive Cheer – Montrose Invitational, 8 a.m.
Ice Hockey – Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook Kingswood at Detroit U-D Jesuit, 5 p.m.
Monday, February 9
Girls Basketball – Pickford at Newberry, 6 p.m.
Tuesday, February 10
Boys Basketball – Pickford at Newberry, 6 p.m.
Boys Basketball – Chassell at Calumet, 7 p.m.
Boys Basketball – Saginaw Nouvel at Haslett, 7 p.m.
Boys Basketball – Mio at Hillman, 7 p.m.
Girls Basketball – Goodrich at Montrose, 7 p.m.
Girls Basketball – Central Lake at Onaway, 7 p.m. (VOD)
Boys Basketball – Lincoln Alcona at Rogers City, 7 p.m. (VOD)
Boys Basketball – Hale at AuGres-Sims, 7:15 p.m.
Girls Basketball – Hopkins at Plainwell, 7:15 p.m.
Live stats of select basketball games also are available on MHSAA.tv. Check out the MHSAA.tv website on game night to see which schools are streaming live stats, or stop by to view stats following games on an On-Demand basis. A Day Pass to view live stats is $1.95.
All sporting events – live or delayed – are available on MHSAA.tv on a subscription basis for their first 72 hours online. A portion of each subscription is returned to school originating the broadcast. Video subscriptions run $9.95 for a Day Pass and $14.95 for a Month Pass. Some schools also are offering Annual Passes at a discounted rate. All sporting events become available for free On-Demand viewing three days after they have been posted.
To view all of the recent School Broadcast Program productions, go to MHSAA.tv, click On-Demand on the nav bar of the left side of the page, and on the Filters tab at the top of next page, click on All States and then select Michigan.
Also available below is an SBP highlights package from the past week, including a 55-50 victory by East Lansing over St. Johns in a boys basketball contest plus a 37-36 overtime win for Fairview at Lincoln Alcona in girls basketball.
Schools interested in becoming a part of the School Broadcast Program should contact John Johnson at the MHSAA Office.
To say that American female athletes dominated the recent Olympics in Tokyo would be an understatement.
Among the 66 medals earned by American female Olympians – most by any country in the history of the Games – were gold-medal performances by the U.S. basketball, volleyball, water polo and beach volleyball teams. Eighteen medals were earned by the U.S. women swimmers, female track and field athletes claimed 15 medals, and the U.S. women’s softball and soccer teams won silver and bronze medals, respectively.
In the past 30 years of the Olympic Games, the United States has dominated the women’s team sports of basketball (nine golds), soccer (four golds, one silver, one bronze) and softball (three golds, two silvers) — not to mention the untold number of medals in track and field. And this past summer, the U.S. women’s volleyball team claimed its first gold medal.
These performances by some of our nation’s most skilled female athletes never would have been possible without the passage of Title IX and the offerings of these sports through our nation’s schools. With the chance to play afforded by the landmark Title IX legislation in 1972, girls participation in several high school sports skyrocketed in the years that followed.
When the NFHS conducted its first participation survey in 1971, basketball and outdoor track and field were the primary girls sports, comprising about two-thirds of the 294,000 total. However, with the opportunity to play additional sports, girls flocked to volleyball and softball first, along with cross country and eventually soccer.
Soccer, in fact, has had the most remarkable growth. In 1971, only 700 girls were playing high school soccer. Twenty-five years later, that number had climbed to almost 210,000; and as the 50th anniversary of Title IX approaches, there are now almost 400,000 girls playing high school soccer – a staggering 56,200 percentage increase in 50 years. Soccer now ranks fourth in popularity among girls high school sports – all because of that opportunity in 1972.
There are many other success stories, however. The pre-Title IX survey in 1971 indicated that 1,719 girls were participating in cross country. With increases every year until 2015, today, there are 219,345 girls competing in high school programs and the sport ranks sixth in popularity.
Although participation numbers have leveled a bit the past 10 years, fast-pitch softball is another sport that flourished after the passage of Title IX. With fewer than 10,000 participants in 1971, the numbers quickly rose to 220,000 by 1985 and 343,000 by 2000, and softball is currently fifth among girls sports with 362,038 participants.
Since track and field and basketball were the primary sports in the early days of girls sports programs, increases in those sports have not been as dramatic; however, they remain the first and third most-popular sports, respectively, today. Volleyball, however, much like soccer, continues its upward climb.
Without a doubt, volleyball has seen the steadiest increases among girls high school sports the past 50 years. After starting with 17,952 participants in 1971, the numbers jumped to 300,810 by 1990 and 409,332 by 2010 and 452,808 by 2018. During its climb, volleyball surpassed basketball as the No. 2 girls sport.
And among the top six girls sports from 2010 to 2018 (numbers are not available the past two years due to the pandemic), volleyball has gained the most participants (43,476), followed by soccer (32,549). And all of this has occurred thanks to legislation passed in 1972 that was not fundamentally meant to address opportunities for girls to participate in high school sports.
The NFHS is leading a yearlong celebration of the 50th anniversary of Title IX, which officially occurs on June 23, 2022. “Title IX at 50 – Celebrating and Growing Opportunities” is highlighting the law’s impact by celebrating the inspirational individuals and landmark moments in the history of Title IX, and continuing to grow the educational and competitive opportunities for the future.
More information, including a Title IX Timeline, Title IX Milestones, The History and Importance of Title IX, Title IX Fact Sheet, Title IX Frequently Asked Questions and several Title IX videos, can be accessed on the NFHS Website.
Dr. Karissa L. Niehoff is beginning her fourth year as executive director of the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) in Indianapolis. She is the first female to head the national leadership organization for high school athletics and performing arts activities and the sixth full-time executive director of the NFHS. She previously was executive director of the Connecticut Association of Schools-Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference for seven years.