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TSSAA votes against public / private, multiplier changes

12:00 AM, Dec. 05, 2012 EST

A proposal to unify all public and private schools in the regular season before separating them in the playoffs was denied by the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association's Legislative Council on Wednesday.

The defeated proposal also included a request to remove the multiplier rule. The 1.8 multiplier is applied to the enrollment of private schools in Division I.

"There was a lot of discussion in the regional meetings about everybody coming back together and playing during the regular season, which would help out travel, especially for the Division II people who are having to travel so far," TSSAA executive director Bernard Childress said. "There were issues of starting classification all over at this point."

The proposal also was voted down 218-96 at last month's regional meetings in Nashville, Jackson and Knoxville.

"Some of the schools (felt) like if everybody was back together that's going to move me to a higher class," Childress said. "I guess the uncertainty of how many classes do we have in Division I, how many classes do we have in Division II, what will the tournaments look like -- all of those questions weren't answered when the proposal was there, and I guess the uncertainty of all of that probably forced the schools to say no."

Trousdale County High School submitted the proposal. Trousdale County schools superintendent Clint Satterfield, a former Yellow Jackets football coach, believes the proposal is a good compromise between public and private schools.

"We're all members of TSSAA, so we all play together during the regular season and then when we start tournament play then we would separate," Satterfield said. "I think private schools have a distinct advantage over public schools."

Satterfield believes the first step is acceptance of the new format, and the second is figuring out the details of reclassification.

"Some people really like (the idea)," Satterfield said. "Some people really hate it. I think the larger schools don't like it because the Class 5A and 6A schools say, 'I've got to play against Brentwood Academy, Ensworth, MUS, McCallie and Baylor. I don't want to play them. They're going to see my kids and recruit my kids.' If their kids are really good, those schools have already got their eyes on them anyway."

The nine-member Legislative Council is responsible for amendments to the TSSAA's Constitution and bylaws.

The council also denied proposals on:

* A change that would have moved all sports' first day of practice from Monday back to Saturday, and would also have moved all sports' (except football) first competition day from Monday back to Saturday. Football's first game would remain on Friday.

* A change in the co-op program that would have added the enrollments of the two schools together to determine their classification.

A proposal to change transfer eligibility died due to lack of a motion. The proposal requested that if a student transfers with an athletic record to a boarding school or from a boarding school, without a bona fide change of residence by his/her parents or guardian, the student will be ineligible for 12 months from his/her last participation date.



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