Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Late tipoffs a problem in need of answer

The boys’ game tip-off was at 8:42 p.m.

Ridiculous.

Last night’s basketball quadruple-header at West Mecklenburg - like most in Charlotte - runs too late into the night. A school night, when kids should be at home.

That 7:15 a.m. school bell isn’t going to ring any later the next day.

Basketball normally begins at 4 p.m. with two junior varsity games, followed by the girls’ varsity game at 6:30 p.m. (rarely happens). Boys’ varsity games are listed as 7:45, but that too would be an early Christmas present if it happened.

It’s too much basketball crammed into one night. If there is an overtime game, or one of those games filled with fouls and foul shots (i.e., clock stoppages), well, everything gets pushed back.

It’s like a rainy day at the airport. Sit and wait. Your flight (or hoops game) will happen eventually.

You just might be sleepy when it arrives.

Do the late start times bother you? What solutions would you suggest?

Post your ideas in the comments section.

-- Cliff Mehrtens

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

I agree< I don't understand why they have to have so much warm up time. one game ends and they put any where between 12-20 minutes before next game starts.....

Anonymous said...

The easiest way to solve the problem is to have a running clock for the two JV games. This way the varsity game starts right at 6pm or maybe 615...varsity boys at 730 745 and you are done by 930. We have done it in cleveland county for quite a while.

Anonymous said...

The JV games used to be played at the alternate site. Greed or budget has resulted in all 4 at one site

coacht said...

Play JV games on different nights. JV on Monday-Wednesday, Varsity on Tuesday-Friday. It alleviates late games, and also practice issues (4 teams sharing one gym for practices). I agree the games go on too late. Administrators don't like this because they have to stay for home games more often, so it probably won't fly.

Running clock for JV-- no way. It's hard to teach the game like that, and those JV kids deserve a full game. Besides, it'll be a big disadvantage to some of the programs who need to develop young players on the JV.

North Meck Diehard said...

One solution that would help would be to have the visiting teams leave their school at a time that allows the first JV game to start on time. Last week, due to expectable traffic, our first game didn't start until nearly 4:45.
A second solution would be to have JV games separated from Varsity, especially during non-conference play. Since these are the longer trips usually, playing one set home and the other away would allow for full games and decent start times for all games. And since the visiting teams takes multiple buses with current scheduling, there wouldn't even be any increased expense for each school to take one bus (instead of one school taking two).

Anonymous said...

Do away with high school sports altogether. That gets rid of cheating too.

Anonymous said...

In Westbury, Long Island, New York, the JV games were on alternate days from Varsity. Works much better and give everyone an opportunity to play without a runing clock.

Anonymous said...

I too agree...I am the clock operator for one of the school's in question...Not that it was not already painful enough to sit through two jayvee games before the action picked up, someone from CMS decided this season that it would be great if we had a regulation clock for jayvee games, instead of the running clock we've had in the past, with the final two minutes of each half being regulation...HAVE YOU HAD THE HONOR OF SITTING THROUGH A JAYVEE GIRLS BASKETBALL GAME?...in years past, i have gotten out of the gym between 9:00-9:30, now it's between 10:00-10:30...thanks CMS for making my job harder, as i am a teacher and have to be in my classroom by 6:45...sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet!

Anonymous said...

another option is play the girls away and the boys home and then switch. it would shorten the length on both ends. using 2 gyms costs the same as using 1.

Anonymous said...

As the father of a Basketball player now in his senior year, I have been sitting through the marathon evenings for four years. The best alternative is to play JV games on alternate nights. It is not fair to the young JV players to slight them with a running clock. In fact, they should have the opportunity to play 8 minute quarters like the varsity. They work hard and this would prepare them better for the future. Obviously, this could only be done with the alternate night concept. Are some of the games painful you bet your behind they are, but when your child is a participant it is a whole different story. Then again coordination in CMS schools could be an issue, they already are having trouble with verifying the addresses of their players. Sorry for the jab but the CMS hierarchy, their coaches, AD's and Principals deserve all the hell they are now receiving. What a shameful situtation.

Anonymous said...

The jv teams deserve to be able to play without a running clock. Only way to give them this chance and to keep the varsity games from ending at 10 or 11pm is to play on different nights. Mon-Wed for jv Tues-Thurs for varsity.

Anonymous said...

No question about it...4 games at one site does not work. In the Triangle area, some conferences play boys JV and boys varsity at one site; girls JV and girls varsity at the other site. Others do varsity at one site (6:00 girls tip off) and JV at opposite site (5:00 girls tip off). Either way, everybody gets home at a decent hour.

Anonymous said...

Play the girls games on Mon and Thursday starting at 6:00 and the boys on Tuesday and Friday at 6:00 also!!

Anonymous said...

Separate nights do not work for JV and Varsity. Often JV coaches also asist with Varsity and that makes their week impossible to put together. No one has suggested the most obvious answer....start the school day at a reasonable 8:00am. When did the school systems decide that teenagers had to be in class to start learning at 7:15 while elementary and middle, who have to be dropped off early for parents who work, don't start until much later? I would much rather have my son's day go from 8 to 3:15 instead of 7:15 to 2:30. I have a son on varsity and that extra 45 minutes in the morning would make a huge difference. Then when the games did run long, it is not as bad the next morning. The problem is not the 4 games... it is the whacked school schedule.

Anonymous said...

I agree the JV games should be played on different nights. I officiate BB games and delays penalize everyone. We arrive at 5pm anticipating a 6:15 pm or 6:30pm tip-off. I have had games start as late as 7:30 pm. We too have jobs and early morning appointments. When we question the late starts we are told to "be patient do it for the kids" It is time the schools do something for the kids and get them all home at a decent hour.

Senior Parent said...

SIMPLE: Since most JV Coaches (boys/girls) assist with Varsity, I think that they should have boys home-girls away and vice versa on the same night. Six and Seven, fifteen games; that way most parents have enough time to attend, students and school officials can get home at a reasonable hour. No, I don't agree with running clocks for JV, simply because they put in as much time as varsity and should be able to play.

SC Coach said...

I am a coach in SC and they have ninth grade/JV on Monday/Thursday and Varsity on Tuesday/Friday. If Varsity is home then ninth/JV play away. We have a a varsity head coach, 2 varsity asst., a JV coach, and a ninth grade coach. the JV and ninth grade coach are required to be at varsity home games and can come to varsity away games if they want. To the person who said it puts a lot on the coaches. It does, but we coach because we love to coach.

Anonymous said...

When I was in high school in the Triangle it was pretty simple...JV and V boys play at one location and the JV and V girls play at the other.

One issue could be gas prices for the buses. I am not sure how the travel is arranged...but I can not imagine that the JV girls hang around and wait for a bus after the Varsity boys are done...therefore there have to be atleast two buses moving from the away school.

I just do not get why a 5 pm start for JV and a 7pm start for V is such a hard thing to figure out...play at seperate sites and use a regulation clock...

This allows the JV assistants to help with the Varsity and visa versa.

If there is a 9th grade team then they can arrange the schedule a little different...4.30-9th grade, 6.00-JV and 7.30 varsity...

I would suggest have the 9th grade clock run until the final 2 minutes and boom you are home free....

Anonymous said...

In Gastonia JV teams play six minute quarters, maybe CMS and the private schools should do the same. And don't allow for over-times.

Titan98 said...

Since Char-Meck schools dismiss at 2:15, why not start the JV games at 3:45?

Also the individual schools need to highly stress to their employees who work the games that the flow of the game is important. I don't think the kids should sacriface game time by running the clock.

Also I think splitting locations is a bad idea and not the most economical of ideas. Some schools can't bring in enough folks for the JV games to pay for the officials. How do you expect to pay all the other expenses involved in running a facility