Special to the Times-Tribune
Beginning in the fall of 2013 the first weekend of November will have a championship feel unlike any other in the Association’s 95-year history. The KHSAA Board of Control approved a measure at its July meeting to create a fall sports weekend of championships as five separate team championships will be decided on the same Saturday.
The final championship contests for volleyball, boys’ and girls’ cross country, as well as boys’ and girls’ soccer will be awarded on Nov. 9, 2013. The new series of championships will be held in week 18 of the NFHS corresponding date calendar.
The decision to create a fall weekend of champions received support for several reasons, among them the fact it cuts down on scheduling conflicts for member schools, unlike when the championships are conducted on three separate weekends. Similar events also have been conducted in the past with multiple championships on the same weekend, including the soccer/cross country, tennis/track and baseball/softball combinations with great success.
“This is a model that has worked well in the past and we likely will be using more in the future because it causes minimal intrusion in the academic year,” said KHSAA Commissioner Julian Tackett. “We want to make sure student-athlete success in the classroom comes first and if having multiple championships at once is a way to ensure they miss less study time and it helps teachers, then I’m all for it. We tried it last spring by doubling up tennis and track in May and baseball and softball in June and received a lot of positive feedback for it. I think that weekend will be something people now will be able to circle on their calendars years in advance, which will really enhance the championship experience for every sport involved.”
The length of the soccer season will remain unchanged. The length of the volleyball season will remain the same, though the official start date of the first match will move back by one week, to Aug. 12, 2013. The length of the cross country season will be one week shorter as the date of its championship moves from the second weekend of November to the first. The first official practice date for each remains July 15.
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