the bistro off broadway

Cincinnati Enquirer
Area schools offer perspective on OHSAA's plan for competitive balance this fall
Mike Dyer

CINCINNATI -- Like it or not, the process of leveling the playing field in Ohio high school sports has begun.

Though the competitive balance measure passed in May 2014 for 821 Ohio High School Athletic Association member schools statewide, implementation is finally ready for the upcoming fall sports season.

The reaction among Cincinnati-area athletic directors and coaches ranges from a shrug of shoulders to outright opposition.

A lot depends on perspective. The size of the member school and whether it’s public or non-public offers insight into how this impacts a particular area school.

“My biggest disappointment with how it has been handled is the timing,” said longtime Cincinnati Country Day girls’ soccer coach Theresa Hirschauer.

“It really has not been given a good timeline. For example, I think we might be Division II but won’t know until April. Our schedule was developed with a Division III mindset. They should have posted the divisions in the fall so we could prepare.”

Western Brown, a Brown County high school, is constantly on the enrollment line between Divisions I and II.

Athletic Director and Assistant Principal Tim Cook, a member of the Southwest District Board, said it will take a couple of two-year enrollment cycles and some tweaking to determine how successful the formula will be.

But he gives the OHSAA the benefit of the doubt.

“I did and still do support the competitive balance option even though we have not gotten to see how it will work yet,” Cook said. “I think everyone is anxious to see what it will do. I felt like it was worth a try with the way the divisions were set up currently.”

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