LATHAM, NY — The New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) is holding its annual summer meeting of the Central Committee on July 30-31 in Verona, NY. The primary focus of the meeting is to vote on proposals, listen to discussion items pertaining to interscholastic athletics and to afford superintendents, principals, athletic representatives, and section executive directors the opportunity to meet in small groups.

The Central Committee approved the revision of classification cut off numbers (effective Fall 2020) and a policy for combined practices in the sport of football. The Central Committee also approved the institution of a penalty for practicing on courts at the Girls Tennis Championships. Additionally, in the sport of boys volleyball, a pool play tie breaking procedure was approved for the 2019-2020 season; reverting back to the previous procedure. A number of proposals in modified sports were approved by the Committee.

Most of the actions taken by the Central Committee will have no impact on local teams. The one which will impact local squads is the change of breakpoints in football.

Under the current classification numbers, Class AA starts at a BEDS (students in grades 10-12) number of 1,025 and goes up from there.

That class won’t change under the new classification numbers but the rest will.

Class A, which currently includes teams with BEDS numbers between 585 and 1,024 will raise the bottom number to 630.

Class B, Class C and Class D will change in ways that will directly impact Waverly, Tioga and Spencer-Van Etten/Candor.

With a current BEDS number of 358, Waverly is in Class B (355-584) by three students. The new number for the low end of Class B will be 397, which means that Waverly’s student population would need a massive influx to get bumped back into Class B. That should leave the Wolverines back in Class C, which has a range of 261-396.

Joining Waverly in Class C will be Spencer-Van Etten/Candor. The Eagles BEDS number for the fall, based on the rules for combined teams, will be 300 which means that the schools would have to lose 40 students to drop to Class D.

Last season, the range for Class D was 229 and under. The new numbers which raise the 229 to 260 will not change what class the Tigers play in — with a BEDS number of 213, Tioga was already in the state’s lowest class — but will make a small change in the teams the Tigers have to beat to get out of the section.

A quick look at the crystal ball for the 2020 football season seems to indicate that Class C would be comprised of Chenango Valley; Waverly; Chenango Forks; Windsor; Dryden, Susquehanna Valley; Whitney Point; Newark Valley; Spencer-Van Etten/Candor; and Watkins Glen/Odessa-Montour. It should be noted that at 409 and 402, respectively, Oneonta and Norwich are in range to drop down to Class C as well.

Class D could be relatively unchanged, but adding Sidney to the mix could make the Tigers’ task more difficult.

Other approved items include the creation of an Annual Officials Appreciation Day, which will take place on the Wednesday of Week #13 of the NYSPHSAA Standard Calendar. This year, Officials Appreciation day will be celebrated on Wednesday, October 2nd, 2019. The Committee also approved the addition of Unified Basketball and Unified Bowling to the Scholar-Athlete program.

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