NIAA should look at 5 divisions
October 1, 2013
OK, I'll be the first to admit that I have an opinion on everything when it comes to high school sports. Sometimes I've been told I'm nuts and people have also told me that my opinions were spot on.
I received an email recently from a Division 1A coach questioning the fairness of a school with 700-plus students playing a school twice its size, especially in football. Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association Executive Director Eddie Bonine once told me he wasn't opposed to a five-division format for football, and I agreed with him at the time, and still do think that would be the best way to go. The problem with Nevada is that the state is so spread out, and that presents transportation and budget issues.
I understand all that, but I don't think the various school districts and administrators are working well with each other. Everybody is out for themselves, and the administrators aren't looking at the big picture. In essence they don't really care about their athletes, only the bottom line of their individual district budgets.
I've yet to look at the Las Vegas area, but within 20 minutes I looked up enrollment figures for Northern Nevada schools, and came up with a five-division format. The key thing is to remember is competitive balance and that realignment cycles take place every couple of years, and the NIAA should have the ability to move schools up and down based on well or how badly they perform.
Here ya go. This would be for football only.
5A: Spanish Springs (2408), Douglas (1863), Carson (2150), Reno (1711), Reed (2117) and McQueen (1877). 4A: North Valleys (2250), Damonte Ranch (1428), Hug (1439), Galena (1401), Manogue and Fallon (1261). 3A: Wooster (1695), Elko (1351), Spring Creek (881), Sparks (1209), Lowry (959), Fernley (991), Truckee and South Tahoe. 2A Dayton (759), Yerington (401), Silver Stage (339), Lovelock (207), Incline (324), Whittell (233), ROP and Battle Mountain. 1A remains unchanged.
It was heartwarming to see the ovation that Tim Lincecum received from Giants fans when he left the game against the Dodgers on Thursday night. With a few exceptions, it was a rough year for Timmy. He was 10-14, including the no-hitter against San Diego. He made $22 million this past year, and he's not worth $22 million now. If he truly wants to come back, he should be wiling to cut that salary in half, or sign a contract laden with incentives. He's had two rough years, and on a team built on pitching, you can't afford to have one of your starters go down the tubes like he did. He did a great job as a set-up man in the last World Series, but set-up men don't make big money. The Giants, with a few tweaks, can still be a good team. If Lincecum and Ryan Vogelsong can make strong comebacks that could hide some of the weak spots the team has.
I'd like to see the Giants go after a Curtis Granderson. The team needs to get a power-hitting outfielder and give Buster Posey and Hunter Pence some support. The Panda? I think he'd make a good DH in the American League. He's been injury prone, and I'd love to see somebody play 145-150 games at third base. Could third base be in Posey's future? After all, he played shortstop in college, so I think he's probably got enough skill set to make a move to third.
I hope the 49ers would seriously consider either drafting a speedy wide receiver or signing a free agent in the off-season. Michael Crabtree, Anquan Boldin and Mario Manningham are all possession receivers. The Niners need somebody who can stretch the field vertically. The Niners need to be more creative in getting Boldin in space. He was eaten up by Seattles's Richard Sherman in man-to-man coverage.
Is the pressure getting to Colin Kaepernick? He's been very tight-lipped in recent post-game press conferences, and that's un-Kaepernick like. My only issue with Colin is that I would have liked to see him turn down some of the off-season stuff he got involved in. After all, he'd only started 10 games, and got way too much attention in my opinion. Have teams figured out the read-option, or is coach Jim Harbaugh worried about Kap's health? What made the 49ers successful last year was the read-option. It gave defenses something they had to plan for each and every week. It opened up other players. Now it seems like the read-option is a forgotten weapon. Injuries are part of the game.