There has been a lot going on about Private Schools Vs. Public Schools where Ohio State Championships are the topic of conversation. There should be. The Reality is when you take a school that has open access to entire regions population, and in some cases the whole of the USA. Then have those teams squaring off against teams created out of the population of 5 square miles you will not be able to reach any kind of balance. Private schools are supposed to be better, in academics, college placements and athletics. Public schools are handicapped by every thing from the Federal to the grossly over funded state pension plans, that not only take money from education, but athletics and all after school enrichment programs.
I am not going to attempt, to tread on any topic other than Ice Hockey. Hockey, is what I write about. Competitive balance in ice hockey in Ohio is far more close than not. Again the steps that need to be taken are straight forward.
1. Ohio High School hockey needs to Join USA hockey.
2. Establish TWO (2) Championship levels. AA and A Where by the teams in the AA level would or should include. Toleod St. Johns, Toledo St. Francis, Sylvania Northview, Bowling Green, Findlay, Anthony Wayne ( a stretch they need to take), Walsh, Shaker Heights, Rocky River, St. Ed's, Gilmour, Universty School, Strongsvill, Lake Cathloic, St.Ignatius, Mentor, Padua, Holly Name, Hudson, Olentange Libery, Olentangy Orange, Dubline Jerome, Dublin Coffman, Upper Arlington, Cincinati Moeller.
Two Divisions Red and Blue the look would be
1. Toledo St. Johns, 2. Walsh, 3. University School, 4. Shaker heights, 5. Olentangy Liberty, 6. lake Cathloic, 7. Strongsville, 8. Dublin Jerome,9. Findlay, 10. St. Eds, 11. Upper Arlington 12. St Francis
1. Sylvania Northview 2. St. Ignatius, 3. Bowling Green, 4. Anthonywayne, 5. Rocky River, 6. Olentangy Orange, 7. Hudson, 8. Dublin Coffmann, 9. Mentor, 10. Padua, 11. Holly Name, 12. Gilmour 13 Cincinati Moeller.
The season should consist of two starting tournaments. Where by Red and Blue would each face other, in some random selection. Then League play where each team, in each league would play each team once. Followed by 5 cross division games. Then each division would play a play off to determine rank. Following the playoff the teams who finish #1&2 each receive first round byes. Teams finishing #1 will remain as host teams, #2 teams will be placed in the other divisions brackets as #2 seeds. Then those teams ranked 3-8 will be placed in round 2 brackets. Teams 9-12 will be placed into round 1 play in brackets where the winners of those games will play teams Ranked 1 and 2 in round two. All teams that finish in blue ranked 3-8 are placed in the blue bowl, all Red teams 3-8 are in the red bowl, each bracket in round two consists of one red, and one blue drawn randomly. Teams will then commence playing down until the final team from either side is remaining for championship. Where by said Champion would be eligible for the USA hockey High School Championships and represent Ohio.
As far as a few other tweaks go, for hockey, it is only fair to allow any student who so transfers from any none AA school to a AA to be allowed to play imitatively if that transfer is completed prior to the start of the academic school year.
That any student who so transfers from a AA Public to a AA private, or AA private to a Public be forced to sit out one full season unless that transfer takes place prior to his Freshman year, but not applying should the student transfer from AA to A or A to AA ever in any circumstance.
That at the conclusion of every season, AA teams must declair their intent to return to AA, that any A team may apply for AA status.
That a board of Governors be established and its membership be maintained as 4 head coaches from each division. That said board may vote to remove any team from AA for lack of performance. That said board would also server as a Rules committee considering their understanding and love of the game.
Hockey is unique among all sports. Ohio Hockey has not been modernized since the 80's. This lack of attention has had negative impacts on our student athletes. Its time to make some sweeping changes, and adaptions to achieve competitive balance in hockey.