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Posts Tagged ‘San Diego Section’

Club soccer programs get kicked in the rear by CIF

April 5, 2010 2 comments

Rules changes and the impact on local high school soccer (Roseville Press Tribune – 4/13/2010)
CIF to vote on rule change that could affect soccer (Anderson Valley Post – 4/13/2010)
Kicked Out by the CIF? (Auburn Journal – 4/11/2010)

(April 5, 2010) California’s club soccer programs – specifically girls and boys U14, U15, U16, U17 and U18 teams – are about to get kicked to the curb by the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF). It seems CIF has had it with players doing double duty on high school and club teams during soccer season. They want to end this practice and force kids into playing for their high school teams only during soccer season.

Player double-duty is not a new problem. Club soccer and high school soccer seasons happen at the same time and CIF has historically allowed players to “double up.” Whether it’s fall for the boys or spring for the girls, there’s alway something going on as far as Club teams are concerned. Maybe not so much in the spring for girls high school, but the fall… well, we all know the mayhem.

The Bylaw change, if approved, will have an enormous effect on California’s club soccer programs. Most would argue it may not be that bad for club soccer since when given a choice between high school and club soccer, the sane player would likely choose club given these programs are for the most part better than high school. However, the reality is dilution to club program will be the likely result with some players choosing club and others high school. The end result will be damaged Club programs since they rely on player fees not taxes to survive.

A damaged club program is not good for US soccer in general or competition. Like it or not, these programs, not high school soccer, are where most US soccer stars are trained and groomed for the big stage.

So, here’s the skinny on what going to be voted on by CIF on May 7th and what you can do to protest. The below was taken directly from CIF documents:

Revision of CIF Bylaw 600 (Outside Competition-soccer)

This revision would mandate that students could not compete on an outside team in the sport of soccer while competing for their high school team, regardless of the season in which soccer is played. Currently, our students can compete on outside teams because we play during the fall (boys) and the spring (girls).

CIF State description on why Bylaw change is needed – Click here to read CIF document
CIF State Bylaw 600 revision – Click here to see actual Bylaw changes

CIFWatchdog Comment: This may cause serious damage to club soccer in the state of California since both high school and club have co-existed for quite some time. Club soccer is no small entity and, in fact, considered to be of higher quality than most high school programs. Many players feed into ODP and State programs from club programs.

This change effectively forces players to choose between club and high school programs. Not a good choice. I am not sure which program will suffer more, but either way, both programs lose.

If you believe this is change for the worse, I urge you to contact your CIF Section Commissioner (Click here for phone an email contact information) to voice your concerns. If you’d like to contact CIF State, direct your communication to its president, Marie Ishida at ishidasan@cifstate.org or 916-239-4477.

The more people knowing about this and complaining the better the chance of derailing it – Please send this link to your friends –  https://cifwatchdog.wordpress.com/2010/04/05/club-soccer-gets-kicked-in-the-rear-by-cif/

CIF San Diego Section on the hot seat

March 3, 2010 2 comments

It seems CIF San Diego Section and its commissioner, Dennis Ackerman, are also being taken to task by citizens for apparently being arbitrary and discriminatory in application of CIF Bylaws and penalties. The stench is so bad, even the local newspaper and a television station have jumped in to the fray with stories, opinions and ample television time:

Local CIF plans independent investigation into bias claims (San Diego Union Tribune)
Violations at Poway High were apparently ignored
(San Diego Union Tribune)
Appearances seem fishy in Poway probe (San Diego Union Tribune)
Citizens Against CIF spokesman outlines case against Ackerman (KUSI TV)

The story being told in San Diego is eerily similar to many stories around the state. With little to no oversight, CIF commissioners feel free to dispense “fairness” and enforce of CIF rules as they see fit. Some schools get a pass on violations (or a slap on the wrist), some do not. Some players get a pass, some do not. Preferential treatment rules the day. Clearly, people are fed up with CIF and want change. Read the comments on the bottom of the Union Tribune stories or watch the video.

Yes, change is desperately needed.  It’s going to take a lot of work, but it will happen. I applaud the folk in San Diego for applying continuous pressure. It is needed. Stewart Payne, head of Concerned Citizens Against CIF, gets a “thumbs-up” from me.

The good news is change is in the wind. Not only are everyday folk like me working hard to “out” the CIF, there’s legislation (Assembly Bill 352 and Assembly Bill 1154) moving through the state legislature that will force the CIF to give the public greater access to CIF records and challenge its decisions. I call this much needed transparency. It’s also called shedding light where it needs to be.

By the way, props to Assemblywoman Audra Strickland for authoring these two bills. If you’d like to show her your support or simply tell her your CIF story, give her a call at (916) 319-2037.

I do plan to cover the legislative angle more deeply in coming posts.