FHSAA Board mandates helmets for girls lacrosse, open to concept of football national postseason bowl game

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – In its final meeting of the 2013-2014 school year, the Florida High School Athletic Association's Board of Directors voted to require helmets for girls lacrosse participants, effective for the 2015 season, and also in favor of a potential postseason national bowl game for football through Paragon Marketing.

US Lacrosse, which governs high school girls lacrosse nationally, does not require female high school lacrosse players to wear protective headgear although women are permitted to wear soft helmets. However, the Board continued its emphasis on the safety of student-athletes, mandating that beginning with the 2015 season, all female lacrosse players must wear helmets as a precautionary measure against head injuries.

The Board also agreed to a concept offered by Paragon Marketing, which would make FHSAA member high schools eligible for selection to football postseason bowl game that would be similar to the National High School Invitational in basketball. Under this proposal, the highest nationally ranked football team in Florida may be selected to compete in one nationally televised contest—dependent on the decision of a selection committee and evaluating national rankings—that would likely air on the ESPN family of networks. Moving forward with this concept is contingent on Paragon Marketing securing sponsorships and interest from other state associations, among other factors.

Seacrest Country Day School athletic director Mark Marsala was elected unanimously as the Board’s President-Elect while Miami Christian School athletic director James Colzie will serve as President for the 2014-15 school year.