We are pleased that Mr. Jack Roberts, Executive Director of the Michigan High School Athletic Association has accepted our invitation to speak at the Arizona Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association Conference on September 10, 2012. Mr. Roberts brings experience and leadership at the state and national level and is recognized as a driving force in the state association field.
In his recent blog, "Changing Culture", Mr. Roberts identifies many of the same issues we are dealing with as a state. Our staff is thrilled to have Mr. Roberts share his vision and passion for educational athletics with the athletic administrators of our great state.]]>
As for the present, this year the AIA, in our continued efforts to promote our students, has partnered with MaxPreps and brought Jose Garcia on board. Jose, joining Don Ketchum and Les Willsey as our AIA365.com journalists, will provide the most comprehensive multimedia coverage of high school sports in our state, at no charge. Through AIA365.com and MaxPreps, the AIA has created a state of the art platform allowing coaches and fans the utility to place and find the content they want from video to stats, all in one place.
As for the future, AIA365.com will continue to offer opportunities for the schools to create and display content from their own school page and aggregate the content in one place. We will continue to provide the media, through or platform, stats powered by AIA365.com and MaxPreps. In addition, the AZPreps365 radio call-in show can continued to be heard live on Arizona Sports 620AM every Saturday from 9-11 a.m., and we hope to make that statewide through our partnership with ArizonaSports.com and Skyview Communications. The future developments on AIA365.com and our AZ Preps365 show will allow us an opportunity to promote our 100 year history.
I think Barry likes what we are doing and where we are going. Please join us at University of Phoenix Stadium on Saturday, August 18 for two great games, in celebrating Barry, the start of a new year and most importantly the students and their stories. For more information on the games, including tickets, click here.]]>
The Sollenberger Classic will kick off the season on August 18th. We are thrilled with the teams participating in the games at University of Phoenix Stadium. Nevada and Arizona will be well represented and Barry Sollenberger would be very pleased with the match-ups. Contrary to the speculation and recent “coverage” regarding the selection of teams, the teams were selected in December of 2011 as schools to play in this game honoring Barry… message boards and politics (in AZ or NV) will not tarnish the opportunity for the fans, coaches, the kids and/or those who remember what this game was created for –remembering a dear friend, Barry Sollenberger.
AIA365.com and MaxPreps.com will be launching the new www.aia365.com platform in August… Unlike any other site in the country, www.aia365.com will provide a dedicated (free) portal to all AZ schools and their fans for the latest stories, video, schedules and stats. Watch for new opportunities like Quixcore, improved media player, the all new stats platform for all sports (badminton is still being developed for 2013), expanded coverage and more.
2013 is the 100th anniversary of the AIA. This year we will be commemorating the year with special events and coverage through May of 2014. Make www.aia365.com one of your home pages and/or follow us on Facebook.]]>
While many may want to write off the “small Schools”, I would hope we can focus on how well the Small Schools continue to develop and promote their students, no matter who they play. I know that many have seen the movie “Hoosiers”, telling the story of a small rural school in Indiana moving through the state tournament, this year Arizona may have its own “Hoosiers” story. Don’t count out the “Small Schools” this year…
A lot of articles have been written lately, specifically in the East Valley Tribune, regarding the current AIA Power Rankings System and its validity. The AIA Power Rankings System is working under the context of which the schools created it.
To say the AIA is “ignoring” an error is incorrect. The current system does not present an error as the formula is working as created by the committee that represented the member schools. The AIA values feedback from its member schools, and even outside observers. The AIA is paying close attention to the rankings throughout the sectional basketball tournaments to see if there are in fact concerns that need to be addressed based on the rankings pre and post sectional tournaments, and will bring those findings to the committee.
The Power Rankings Committee, comprised of Athletic Directors representing each conference, met prior to the start of the 2010-2011 school year to create a formula that put emphasis on both a schools victories and victories of their opponents, i.e. strength of schedule. Before that time, the formula was heavily weighted to wins, and the committee convened to discuss how to implement a system that would put an emphasis on opponent wins (OPVP) and opponent opponents wins (OPOPVP).
Looking at basketball, under the prior power ranking system, all schools were ranked based on playing 18 games. So if a school scheduled a 19th game, that school could mark a game non-counting. The committee voiced concerns that this allowed schools to not count the game that would be the weakest on their schedule, or what may be a potential loss to not miss out on victory points. Therefore, it was determined that all games an AIA member school plays vs. a member school should count in the rankings.
Furthermore, if a team played 19 games and their opponent played 18, then the team that played 19 games should have their OPVP as if their opponent had also played 19 games, and the team that played 18 games should have their OPVP reflect as if that opponent played 18 games.
The complete outline of the current formula is here: AIA Power Rankings System.
The AIA Power Rankings System is fluid, meaning, if better ideas are brought forward, the committee can be brought back together to address the ideas and look at samples of potential formula modifications. This will be the case when the board meets on Feb. 21 to begin the process of formulating a new power rankings committee to take a look at new ideas starting the end of March/early April for the 2012-2013 school year. The current formula will have been in place for two years, and that is ample data to analyze the current system vs. any new idea for a modified system.
Regarding the effect on sectional basketball tournaments, there are two sides of the fence regarding teams that qualify for sectional tournaments vs. teams that do not qualify for sectional tournaments. One side is that schools that make sectional tournaments should be the teams that advance to state. The other side is that schools that do not make a sectional tournament, because they reside in a stronger section, should still qualify for state. That is one of the reasons why the top four teams, those that advance to their section semi-finals, are guaranteed a spot at state for a total of 12 teams per division, and the remaining 12 teams qualify based on power ranking.]]>
As we are saddened by the news of the loss of Scot Bemis, Notre Dame Preparatory teacher/coach, let us celebrate his courage and the positive impact he has obviously had on so many at NDP and the influence he has had on a generation.
On behalf of the AIA staff and member schools, our thoughts and prayers are with the Bemis family.
A hard fought “battle” on the field preceded by media coverage of a prior contest and accusations of “bad blood” had the potential to blow up. While there were ejections at the end of the game and emotions ran high, what we have to remember was the behavior of the coaches and students when the final second expired, both teams handled themselves with honor.
I saw a coach who just lost a state championship, that they were expected to win, and the loss of a nationally recognized winning streak, not only congratulate the opposing winning team but state “you guys were awesome today”… true competition demands that we hope that we get the best from our opponents, last Saturday Desert Vista and Hamilton both gave it everything they had, in the game and after the game.
Coach Hinds and Coach Belles should be recognized not only for their season victories and championships, but last Saturday they exemplified in victory and defeat, Pursuing Victory With Honor.]]>
One of our own, Mr. David Hines (AIA Tournament Coordinator) was recently inducted into the Mesa Hall of Fame as a coach. In addition, the 1991 Mesa Red Mountain Cross Country team joined him in this honor. The stories I was certainly privileged to read didn’t focus on the day of the championship, but the journey. The stories were not about victories but about the time spent together and the lessons from their coach. Most importantly, how those lessons have been brought into their adult lives. One of the students wrote to their coach:
“Now that I am a mother, I am reminded again how challenging it mnust have been for you and your wife to dedicate so much time, so many thoughts, personal cash, and I’m sure prayers on us. My parents didn’t quite understand what it is to be on a team, but were proud and supportiuve. I know there were several other families in the same boat. Your family was surrogate for many of us. When the time comes, and I’m sure it will be soon, I look forward to encouraging my children in sports as you did for us.”
“Win at all costs” is a phrase for college and professional sports. In high school, the stories of champions are those exemplified by this team and many others that may or may not have won a state trophy, but are champions as parents, as teachers, as coaches, in business and in medicine. Coach Hines is and was a teacher /coach who focused on the kids, for the right reasons.Congratulations to Coach Hines and the ‘91 Mountain Lion CC team.
1991 Red Mountain Lions CC - AIA State Champions and Life Champions
Erin Chavez – Teacher, mother of two and wife
Wendy Walls - Mother of five and wife
Denise Ferguson – Works in finance, mother of one and wife
Shannon Smith – Teacher, coach, mother of one and wife
Misty English – Teacher, coach, mother of one and wife
Dawn Stone – Emergency room nurse
Courtney Teatro – Teacher, coach]]>
The Strategic Plan was created in 2008 as a five year plan to further the mission of the Association. It was discussed, drafted and approved by three committees focusing on the fiscal responsibilities, operations and statewide presence of the Association. The strategic planning process, never having been done in a formal manner, the AIA Executive Board commissioned the Plan and engaged the staff to bring on an outside facilitator to produce the plan and ultimately share with the membership. Over 60 people from the school and at large community were involved in its formulation and sending to the AIA Executive Board for approval.
Once approved by the Board, the plan was shared with the membership through conference, region and various ad-hoc committees. Well over 1,000 people have been involved in the implementation of the Plan. The implementation continues today. Focusing on enhancing the fiscal and operational structure of the Association, the AIA staff has overhauled and utilized technology to advance the efficacy and efficiency of accounting for and maintaining, as good stewards, the assets of the association. This included bringing the Association’s organizational structure within generally accepted accounting practices (GAAP), following changes to the IRS informational return and audit guidelines, as well as realizing that the Association was operating at a deficit and change needed to occur. We are now operating under GAAP and within the IRS/audit mandates of the revised form 990.
A significant component of the Strategic Plan called for the Association to enhance the media capabilities. This started what was the AIAdigitalnetwork.com, not seen by many, to what is now www.aia365.com. Continued emphasis was placed on the need to control the membership’s content and provide an environment that promoted the accomplishments of our students and coaches as opposed to the emerging “anonymity” of message boards and chat rooms. The move to partner with AZCentral as an experiment while providing a platform to engage the public and prove the model of high school sports being a viable platform, the AIA in the past 5 years has emerged as a true sports property.
Through much of the relationship with AZCentral, the AIA was involved in a dialogue with the Arizona Newspaper Association as to what the role of the media would play in the future of covering and commercializing AIA content. This dialogue in AZ resulted in a mutual agreement as to the credentialing standards in covering AIA sports. This however carried over to our sister association in Wisconsin who carried the burden of legal action to protect its legal rights to federal court. The AIA recognizing this important battle and filed a brief in support of the Wisconsin Association in their battle with Gannett. Judgments in favor of the Wisconsin Association at the trial and appellate level have affirmed the state associations overseeing interscholastic activities the right to control on behalf of their membership the right to monetize and disseminate their championships.
As we look to the future, www.aia365.com will continue to afford AIA member schools a free platform to promote their individual school and produce needed revenue through the creation and distribution of their content. No small accomplishment based on the battles and team effort of not only those in AZ but also those of our sister associations.
The 2008-2013 Strategic Plan has created many successes in the form of www.aia365.com, created a framework to provide a fiscally sound future, not mentioned above a state of the art scheduling program that has reduced travel and more importantly an opportunity for the member schools to have a diverse voice in the future of our Association. This voice comes with great responsibility. Not taken lightly by our Executive Board and staff, it must also be met with the same expressed understanding as to maintaining the course by our membership from district governing board members, superintendents, principals, coaches, students and athletic administrators. We must actively engage our mission as President Theodore Roosevelt stated, “In short, in life, as in a football game, the principle to follow is: Hit the line hard; don’t foul and don’t shirk, but hit the line hard!”]]>
On November 1, 2011, www.aia365.com and the individual school pages found on the site, will be the only place for the official brackets and results in Arizona. This will allow the AIA to continue to serve our fans and provide even more opportunities to engage and promote our students.
As we continue to develop www.aia365.com as the official site of AIA activities, new direction has also been seen with the inclusion of sand volleyball and exploring Stunt Cheer for future sanctioned AIA activities. If you have any questions and/or comments, please send those to email@example.com.]]>
Several schools have taken the steps to promote their schools. Amphi having streamed their National Honor Society induction ceremony to Desert Edge High School laying the foundation through their student driven Sports Marketing class, becoming one of the most comprehensive learning opportunities in the valley, the state, if not the country.
Follow us as we continue to improve AIA365.com promoting our students, teams and future educational opportunities for our students.]]>
"My name is Cathy Nichols and I have a junior playing on the Pinnacle H.S. Varsity Football team (OL #78). I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for working with Mike Palomino to make it possible for our families and friends to be able to view live streaming video and audio from our football games. Outstanding!
What a treat for my three brothers (all of whom played football in high school, one of them 1st team All State). All three of them are re-living their high school football experience through their nephew with your help! Haha. Billy's 82-year-old grandmother in Michigan was thrilled to see the last game against North Canyon. She could hardly believe that viewing this game was possible. To someone that age who is not technologically savvy, this is a miracle.
So, from California (my sis-in-law) to upstate New York (Uncle Billy) and many relatives in between in Michigan, we thank you for the opportunity to share a part of my son's high school life that otherwise would not be possible.
You reap what you sow. Your future should be rich]]>
AIA Bylaw Provision 14.6
SUSPENDED GAME PROTOCOLS
After further review of AIA bylaws, policy and NFHS rules, the AIA Executive Board on 13 September 2011 reviewed and addressed concerns related to games being interrupted because of events beyond the control of the responsible administrative authority. Games shall be continued from the point of interruption unless the teams agree to terminate the game. In the event of a cancellation, postponement, termination, or forfeiture of a game due to inclement weather, the following guidelines will be applied and put in place to promote cooperation between the school administrators, coaches and officials promoting the safest environment at all AIA events.
CATASTROPHIC OR POTENTIAL CATASTROPHIC INJURY
(Game is stopped and player has a defined catastrophic injury, or evaluation is in process)
WEATHER RELATED SCENERIO
For what it’s worth, and of course it’s only my opinion, but after the reading the article in the Republic about the school’s new computer scheduling, I am concerned about the kid’s safety in football. I know the AIA had to give it great thought but the first impression makes me wonder if it’s all about saving a buck. However, on the other hand after viewing Show Low and Blue Ridge (football) schedules it pleases me that these two schools are not playing any reservation schools, except for Alchesay. I know things can’t be perfect, but if it so happens that some kids become paralyzed from playing larger schools it could possibly develop into a huge news story for people like CBS 60 Minutes. Of course the odds are very slim this will not happen but if it did, regardless what the past schools schedules, the story could develop into more than just a news story. With the AIA it is clear it is about money but on the other hand people are talking about safety. Why I am concerned, because it doesn’t seem it’s not about money with the new scheduling, but like I said things can’t be perfect but people are talking if the AIA has lost their common sense to allow a computer program to make the right judgment for kids. Of course I am only an individual who is concerned and that’s all.
The computer scheduling process began over three years ago. Over the summer of 2010, the program began to take shape with vast input from all conference levels, including a superintendent’s advisory committee. The programs primary focus was on reducing travel, so that students could stay in school longer and not miss as many classes. Competition was considered as well, and is why the program would only look one division up or down to schedule an opponent if there was not enough within a school’s own division within a certain drive time.
The reduction in championships in most team sports went from seven to four. The main focus appears to be on football with regards to concern. Looking at football, the initial proposal was to reduce the number of championships to five (one eight-man division, and four 11-man divisions). The conferences wanted five 11-man football divisions, and so those were created placing approximately 32 to 35 schools in each division. This is one more class than the prior classification (before the 4A and 5A division split) when there were five classifications, including eight-man football.
In order to reduce travel the program did what was described two paragraphs above. Rural schools, more than anyone else, needed to reduce travel, and thus, some of their schedules placed them against opponents in a division above their own.
When the schedules were released in late February, concern was raised regarding competition concerns of these rural schools. Some in fact stating they would travel farther to play a like division opponent. The AIA met with the rural schools and the AIA listened. The AIA Executive Board directed staff to create variables in the scheduling program allowing schools the ability to drop two to three of their current football opponents, as long as both schools agreed, and the schools could find another opponent. Schools did in fact take advantage of this process.
The AIA will continue to review the computer scheduling program and the tournament reconfiguration addressing concerns from the membership. As the computer scheduling process unfolded since 2008, the AIA recognized that football creates different variables including safety, revenue for schools, tradition, and competition. Tracy, the emotional examples that you and others bring forward in their emails, have been addressed. The AIA Executive Board, the 750 plus people involved in the various scheduling and reconfiguration committees along with the AIA staff have created a model for scheduling and tournaments that meets many needs. The primary, are the well-being of the students and meeting the mission of our member schools. The AIA staff and Executive Board will continue its common sense approach in providing for the best possible experience for all students involved in AIA athletics and activities.]]>
I just heard that Mr. John Carlson, District AD for the Chandler School District will have an elementary school named after him along with his wife Carol in the fall of 2012. The two are being honored for jointly dedicating over 70 years to the Chandler district and its students. John a former Board member of the AIA and long time AIAAA board member has been a selfless leader not only to the AIA and the AIAAA but also to thousands of wrestlers at the local, state and a national level. Congrats John and Carol well deserved.]]>
Although The Sollenberger Classic kicked-off the fall season last week, the media is saying today is really the start of football (the fall season). Either way the fall sports season is underway, not only football but also volleyball, badminton, fall soccer, cross country, swimming and diving, and golf. The good news is that contrary to some media reports, we have good news out of the AIA.
Many questions continue to be raised on the changes for scheduling, tournaments and recognition, primarily centered on football. While the process, since the 2008 AIA Strategic Plan for the current format has been engaged (over 750 people being involved in vetting the reconfiguration), many still have concerns. Let me address some and put away the conjecture…
In addition to the reconfiguration, this fall marks the launch of the partnership between the AIA and the Arizona Special Olympics Unified Sports programs. Being recognized nationally as one of the shining examples of its kind, we are looking forward to watching it grow. If you want more information, please contact Scott Brown at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition, we will be announcing a new media strategy that includes our own Kevin Ray on the Friday Night Fever team… Watch for updates on www.aia365.com for the good news as we start the 2011-2012 year.]]>
It is unfortunate that so many inaccuracies have been disseminated by school administrators, outside entities and members of the press. The AIA has indeed done the following:
In the attempt to create an understanding as to the implications of 1521 and the AIA’s position, The New Times did not speak to anyone at the AIA or a member of the AIA Sports Medicine Advisory Committee. In addition, the work of the Arizona Sports Concussion Coalition continues with the AIA as a member of this important entity in providing awareness and in disseminating information related to the most up to date research and data related to concussions. For information on concussions and/or 1521, I recommend that you contact Ms. Mattie Cummins, Executive Director of the Brain Injury Association.]]>
It is hot… it has always been hot in the fall in Arizona. We are proud of our history and the commitment the schools have taken to ensure the safety of our students. Good luck to all our fall sports teams.
Updated Information For Football Games Related to Heat
AIA and FSN have reached an agreement to broadcast the Sollenberger Classic game between Chaparral and Bishop Gorman on Saturday August 20, 2011. This game will now be nationally televised on the Fox Sports Networks. Coverage of the game will begin at 7:30 pm to accommodate the national broadcast. It will also be archived on www.aia365.com. In addition, the Show Low versus Moapa Valley game will be broadcast live on www.aia365.com. Both games will also be on KDUS locally and various radio stations throughout Arizona wll be picking up the Show Low versus Moapa Valley game..
Thanks to Mike Connelly and his staff for working with me on this deal and watch for additional news as the AIA finalizes discussions with FSN AZ.]]>
The upcoming Board meeting, Monday August 15th, follows a very productive study session. Included in the study session were conference chairs and members of the Superintendents Advisory Committee. Shared with the group were updates on current issues, progress on the 2008-2013 AIA Strategic Plan and goals for 2011-2012.
The Board will officially approve action taken in regards to concussion education and awareness. The Association was very involved in the drafting of SB 1521, which basically mirrored the AIA Policy approved by the AIA Sports Medicine Advisory Committee in December 2010 and The AIA Executive Board in January 2011. This policy was adopted as the language for the now law. AIA is proud of the relationship with Cardinals, Barrows/St. Joseph Hospital and ASU, which has produced Brainbook. The group heard about the concussion education module and mandated that all students will take the research based educational course developed through this partnership. Arizona will now have education available and mandated for coaches, officials and students, providing for one of the if not the most comprehensive concussion education programs in the country... watch for more with a news conference on August 16th officially announcing the launch of Brainbook.
The study session also reflected that the association has completed 90% of the objectives identified in the 2008-2013 AIA Strategic Plan. Completion of the fiscal and tournament reconfiguration will be completed this year. In addition, the most comprehensive scheduling program hit the mark by reducing travel overall by 35%. While the initial programming required 100’s of hours of work, it sets the foundation to improve the scheduling process, reducing travel costs and keeping students in class. While we recognize we cannot create a system regular or post season to reduce all travel, we believe that this program addresses the concerns raised.
Finally, the study session included a briefing of the goals for the 2011-2012 academic year. The goals included:
The AIA staff is ready to meet the goals and objectives for the upcoming year as set forth by The Board and conference leadership.]]>