Football Advisory Committee

December 10, 2001 • 10 a.m.
FHSAA Office
Gainesville, Florida

The meeting was called to order by Paul McLaughlin. The following committee members were in attendance: Steve Brown, Branford High School; Dan Disch, Ed White High School; Drew Nemec, Trinity Prep School; Phillip Ziglar, Boone High School; Phil Hayford, Shorecrest Prep School; Jeff Rogers, Hialeah Miami Lakes High School; Jason Tudryn, Miami Coral Park High School and Joey Wiles, St. Augustine High School. Ron Allen, Gary Pigott, and Denarvise Thornton from the FHSAA staff were also in attendance.

Paul McLaughlin welcomed the committee members to the FHSAA office. He explained the procedure for completing the expense vouchers and gave an overview of the purpose of the meeting.

1. It was moved by Mr. Wiles and unanimously acclaimed to elect Phil Ziglar chairman of the committee.

2. It was moved by Mr. Hayford, seconded by Mr. Rogers and carried unanimously to adopt the agenda as submitted.

3. Mr. McLaughlin reviewed three pieces of correspondence with the committee. 1) Supt. DiPatri requested the committee to look at a common open date in order to facilitate the rescheduling of make-up games in the advent of a hurricane or other emergency. 2) an e-mail from Mr. Pilatko requested the committee not allow teams with less than a .500 record to be in the playoffs, and 3) an e-mail from coach Russell Bell (LaBelle H. S.) requested the committee look at eight (8) larger districts per classification rather than the current 12 districts we have now. Mr. McLaughlin also shared the statistics gathered for the NFHS relative to selected playoff games this year.

4. Recommendations for change to the existing FHSAA Football Manual were discussed as follows. Detailed information regarding each recommendation that passed can be found on the attachments to these minutes.
• No action was taken to change the procedure for implementation of the “mercy rule” as described in 8.020.
• It was moved by Mr. Disch, seconded by Mr. Brown and carried unanimously to add a third method (by telephone) for schools to report regular season football scores in 10.001 (Reporting Game Scores). [Administrative Change Only—no attachment]
• Mr. McLaughlin informed the committee that the minimum financial penalty will be $50 for any non-compliance issues. Mr. Disch commented that $50 should get people’s attention.
• It was moved by Mr. Brown, seconded by Mr. Nemec and failed 3-5 to deny a staff recommendation to change the procedure for bracketing each region as described in 24.023. This recommendation would have eliminated the paragraph found on page 13 after the specific bracketing placement information [i.e., the runner-up team with the best record would host a first round playoff game and also no adjustments would be made to the bracket to prevent teams from the same district from meeting in the early rounds.]

• RECOMMENDATION: It was moved by Mr. Hayford, seconded by Mr. Disch and carried unanimously to reinstate the open date. The committee wants the FHSAA to survey the membership giving them only options #3 and #4 from the previous survey.

Rationale: It would help with the shortage of officials and in some areas of the state with stadium usage. It would also increase flexibility in scheduling that is non-existent without an 11th date.

Impact: Significant financial impact to players and coaches with option #3. All would have to quit summer jobs one week earlier. Significant financial impact to the FHSAA if classics and jamborees are eliminated.

5. The 2001 Florida Football Finals were discussed. Mr. McLaughlin distributed a copy of a column from the Sunday, December 9, 2001 Tallahassee Democrat discussing the hosting of the event.

6. No FACA recommendations were submitted for the agenda. Mr. Wiles discussed the most frequent complaint he hears regarding coaches not being admitted to playoff games with regular FHSAA coach identification cards. He stated that Georgia permits coaches to attend all levels of playoff games on a complimentary basis. Mr. Allen pointed out that in Georgia the revenue from all playoff games goes to the GHSA Office, not the participating schools.

7. Mr. McLaughlin informed the coaches that ejections for football have decreased over the previous year. The actual numbers include: coaches 13 (down from 18), gross unsportsmanlike ejections 24 (down from 48) and regular ejections 151 (down from 190). Mr. Allen praised the football coaches as a group for the improved sportsmanship this fall. He stated that football is the least of our worries. Mr. Allen concluded his remarks with the description of an incident from a recent basketball game where the officials were verbally accosted after a JV game with numerous uses of various profanities. Mr. Disch commended the FHSAA staff for hearing appeals on players who may have been unfairly ejected.

8. Discussion was held on the following topics:
a. Mr. Disch pointed out the excessive travel for schools in some districts for regular season football games.
b. Mr. Disch inquired as to why the FHSAA now counts school populations by utilizing grades 9-11 instead of the previous method of 10-12.
c. Mr. McLaughlin asked the coaches to discuss the utilization of some type of power rating if at-large teams are still going to be part of the playoffs for the 2003 and 2004 football seasons.

9. In conclusion, Mr. McLaughlin informed the coaches that one of the section 3 slots on the committee was vacant because there were no candidates. Mr. Thornton gave the dates when the declaration of candidacy forms would be available and when the forms needed to be returned to the FHSAA Office. Mr. McLaughlin thanked the committee for their valuable input. He also recognized out-going committee members Steve Brown, Phil Ziglar, and Phil Hayford for their years of service on the committee. The meeting was adjourned at 12:28 p.m.