Sadly it appears that, once again, poor adult oversight has adversely effected a large group of high school student-athletes. The details are vague and in most cases should remain that way for a multitude of reasons. According to an article by Lindsay Kramer of Syracuse.com, the athletic director of Utica-Notre Dame high school in Utica, NY, Martin Nemecek has been removed from his position. In addition, the school's football program will forfeit its entire 2021 season.
My perspective may be tainted from working in mid-major Division I college athletics for a long time. I do believe in free enterprise. However isn't high school, even more than college is about educating our youth enabling them to be better adults? Should we have a 14 year old thinking about making a profit on his or her basketball skills or using those abilities to help make their team better? I'm not sure there is a right or wrong answer with this one. I just know it begs a question.
Girls across New York State will now have the opportunity to play football for their school. A pilot program has been created to add another spring sport for girls in our public high schools. They are going to offer a girls' flag football season starting in 2022 selecting a few "Sections" throughout New York state. Section II is included. It will be supported by the region's NFL teams.
There will be high school football games played in the Capital Region of New York today, strange as that seems at the tail end of March, instead of October. We’ve gotten used to some of the abnormalities, such as no fans in the stands and student-athletes competing with masks. Another missing element will be college coaches.
Even though Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Department of Health opened the door for high-risk high school sports to begin on February 1st, it looks like that will not be the case. Albany County Executive Dan McCoy said "you're not going to get the green light February 1" in his Wednesday morning press briefing.
Governor Andrew Cuomo has given clearance for High Risk High School sports to begin as early as February 1st. High School players and coaches of Basketball, wrestling, hockey, volleyball, football and lacrosse may finally get to compete here in New York. As long as local health departments approve Cuomo and the New York State Department of Health will allow practice to begin as early as February 1st.