AHSAA makes legislative changes

Published 9:30 pm Friday, May 1, 2020

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During its 2020 Spring Legislative Council, the Alabama High School Association ratified 11 new legislative proposals. All 11 will go into effect on June 1.

“I laud our member schools, especially the members of the AHSAA Central Board and Legislative Council for their hard work and leadership,” AHSAA Executive Director Steve Savarese said in a press release. “I especially want to thank the members of the AHSAA Transfer Committee under the leadership of chairperson Terry Curtis, District 1 board member, whose painstaking work has resulted in providing some excellent proposals that will help guide the AHSAA as it moves forward in our changing society.”

One of the most impactful proposals ratified was proposal No. 11, which deals with transfers. Players that transfer will be eligible for below varsity level (meaning junior varsity or freshman team) games, as long as all the other requirements are met. It was passed 24-8.

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The second biggest proposal to pass was No. 11, which deals with academics. The proposal, which passed 28-4, allows unlimited credits earned in approved summer schools, credit recovery or correspondence courses as long as they are completed by the first game of the fall.

Proposal 19 passed with 29-3, the highest margin of victory. The proposal allows athletes, whose parents teach in another school zone to transfer and be immediately eligible, as long as all other requirements are passed. 

Proposal No. 1, which passed 28-4, deals with players that were born in a foreign country. Those students will now be allowed to use a passport or other government documents, that are approved by the AHSAA central board, to provide age verification.

The council also approved to change the penalty for a leaving-the-bench ejection and unsportsmanlike conduct suspensions. Players impacted by the penalty will now miss 20% of the team’s regular-season games. The proposal passed 27-5.

Proposal No. 10 deals with the time athletes are able to be coached outside the AHSAA allowable dates. It passed 26-6.

“No administrator, coach or non-faculty coach from a school’s staff of the same sport may hold organized practice (except during allowable period) or competition for its school or its feeder school students (students 7-12) in that sport outside the sports season during the school year,” the proposal read.

Proposal No. 13 changes the amount of time and athletes that a coach can interact with during the summer. The rule originally stated that students could only work with one coach for two hours a week. Now students can work with multiple coaches a week and can work on multiple sports for two hours a week for 10 of the 20 off-season weeks.

Proposal No. 18 allows coaches to have the option of starting spring evaluation or official practice a week early. This proposal deals with only fall sports and passed 22-10, the closest margin.

Proposal No. 22 mandates all tournaments that determine a champion need to be sanctioned by the AHSAA.