GHSA rejects proposal to allow games against GISA schools

Macon – A proposal to allow Georgia High School Association schools to compete against teams from the Georgia Independent School Association was narrowly defeated at the GHSA Executive Committee spring meeting in Macon on Monday.

The rejection was part of an overall trend of maintaining the status quo on the playing field.

Another proposal, brought up during the new business portion of the meeting, to change the basketball playoff brackets so that teams from the same region could not meet until the semifinals was overwhelmingly rejected

And proposals to adopt a new classification system and bring back a multiplier for private-school students were “received as information” by the reclassification subcommittee and not debated by the full executive committee. Those proposals, which would not have taken effect until the 2014-15 school year, or some variation of them are likely to be among the hot topics at the GHSA’s fall meeting as the association begins its biannual reclassification process.

The initiative to allow GHSA schools to play GISA teams failed by a 30-25 vote. It was the only one of 43 proposals to come out of a subcommittee that was rejected by the full executive committee. One other item, involving time limits on softball games during invitational tournaments, was tabled for later consideration.

“There are some people who believe that there’s value to belonging to this association, that if you’re going to enjoy the benefits of this association then you need to be involved in this association,” GHSA executive director Ralph Swearngin said of the GISA debate. “And there are some practical things, too.”

Among the items Swearngin mentioned were eligibility and transfer issues, different sets of rules and the process for appeals.

The executive committee approved a timetable for selecting a new executive director to replace Swearngin, who previously announced that he will step down on July 1, 2014, at the end of his current contract. The job will be posted on May 1 this year, applications will be accepted through Aug. 1, and a decision will be made next January. Swearngin has worked in the GHSA office since 1992 and held his current position since 2001.

Other proposals that were approved by the executive committee included:

*Revising the “bonus points” awarded in the Class A football power rating system for schools playing teams in higher classifications. The new system will reduce the points awarded for simply playing those teams and place more emphasis on winning those games.

*Increasing the percentage of money from the football championship games at the Georgia Dome allocated to Class A schools from 14 to 16 percent. The Class A money is divided four ways because of the separate public- and private-school championships, so each school’s take increased from 3.5 to 4 percent.

*Allowing players to wear shoulder pads at summer camps for linemen upon approval by the executive director. Swearngin expressed concerns that it would be seen as a step back from the past work done by the association to prevent heat-related injuries, but the measure was approved by a 40-15 vote.

*Granting the executive director the authority to adjust the schedule of the basketball semifinals and finals from the way it is printed in the brackets so that a school whose boys and girls are both playing on the same night can have their games back-to-back whenever possible.

18 comments Add your comment

Proud Panther

April 15th, 2013
3:38 pm

Will the GHSA ever let the high school football teams play against other school during the spring instead of have a color code game like colleges do. Florida and other states allows it. working hard all spring and playing in a color code against each other sucks for the kids and coaches. at lease let the play in a 2 quarter jamboree.

Ron Hyatt

April 15th, 2013
5:05 pm

Fark the GHSA unlubed. Only the NCAA is more corrupt.


April 15th, 2013
10:44 pm

The GISA should take a look at the private catholic leagues of New Jersey. For better competition they should allow recruiting, out of state competitions with public and private schools, and encourage televised games over tv networks and the internet. If the tv networks wont televise the games then you go with the latter of the two, which happens to be way cheaper. If they don’t make a move soon then the GISA will cease to exist which happens to be the goal of the GHSA.

GISA is sad

April 16th, 2013
5:11 am

Many of these GISA schools are just private schools that were started to keep little Johnny and Suzie from having to go to school with those darker people. It is sad really. Take note that many of them are in small rural areas. They have sports for the simple fact that their mommies and daddies want their 120 lb unathletic kid to be able to play football because daddy wasn’t really all that good and can’t give up the dream that he never accomplished. If they have to play with those”other” people, the closest they can get to the field is as a water boy, not the starting running back. I will say this, at least a few of them have given up on some of the bigotry and racism that they were founded on years ago. Let’s hope that continues because it is time for that sentiment to be completely crushed in our world today.


April 16th, 2013
7:34 am

in todays america most private schools exist because of the dismal track record of academics and discipline of public schools not to mention the curiculum that is taught.many as you call them darker people when they have the ability, send their children to private example,the president and his wife send their children to one of the most prestigious private schools in america.remember,one of the first thing’s he did when he took office was stop the federal funding for inner city kids in washingto dc to receive vouchers to attend that very school.the president also attended the most private upper class school when he was living with his grandparents in hawaii as well as michelle attending a private school in chicago.
their motto apparently is “dont do as i do,do as i say”.to suggest that kids with lesser athelectic ability shouldn’t have the opportunity to play is very bigot of you.
btw:my kids go to public schools in a system that is 74% aa.i belive in a free society you have the right to associate yourself with whom you want and rear your children the best way you see fit.


April 16th, 2013
8:34 am

the comment about GISA schools is true but it is also true for anyone with white flight or a kid at marist or Lovett or any other big money private school. Instead of just blacks those schools avoid all the elite ’s idea of Rif raf. You know like your kid. On the other hand the rural schools had nowhere else to go because there was one public school and the academy. When i lived in south Georgia my wife and i were committed to public school althoughour daughter was the only white child in the kindergarten. When we sent her lunch money they sent it back with a note saying she was the only child in school not getting a free lunch and it was not worth the hasssle to colledt her 45 cents. So shut up if you have not lived through something like that.. Oh by the way shes a doctor now and had the best lindergarten teacher I ever saw. Now the first grade was taught by an illiterate fortunately we moved shortly after that. Hats off to counties like Wayne who tried to be a real public school. It was not perfect but they did not run from the issue.


April 16th, 2013
8:50 am

we use to have spring games in the 80’s. I know officials worked them for free.

Old Golden Lion

April 16th, 2013
8:54 am

We had a spring jamboree when I played in the 70’s in Georgia. Played a quarter each against 3 other teams then the following week played a spring intersquad game. Schools made some money, players were happy because we got a break from hitting teammates. I am not sure what the coaches thought about it.
Since the state of Georgia is even more crazy about football could this be a good time to revisit this?

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April 16th, 2013
9:39 am

Private schools should have their own private leagues.


April 16th, 2013
10:11 am

GISA is sad…wow, how clueless can you be? I played at a GHSA school, played in college, coached in college, coached in GHSA, and coached in GISA. For starters, most of these GISA schools are in metro areas. Second, most of these families want their kids to receive quality education…something you don’t see at a lot of public schools. Third, many of these school are religious and parents want that to be a part of their education. Fourth, you are right in that parents do what their kids to play sports. But, what is wrong with that? The lessons that they learn from sports last a lifetime, and that is something I am all for


April 16th, 2013
11:07 am

To GISA is sad, the GISA was started so that children could get higher education which includes christian learning. Which is band from the GHSA. No prayers before games or morning devotional before class in GHSA. The only bigotry you crush is the christian learning atmosphere.


April 16th, 2013
11:44 am

Wow. I only had to read 4 comments to find the simpleton who played his only card. Clearly GISA exists only to have racially pure waterboys. Or should I say waterpeople? Gotta be PC!


April 16th, 2013
3:50 pm

If you lived in Dougherty County, you might understand the academic need for private schools. On the other hand what’s wrong with parents of the 120 lb kids wanting their kids to play sports? It’s the only place they have a chance to play.


April 16th, 2013
4:36 pm

Why not let home schoolers play too, they might get a ride to a good home college, graduate and work at a home job.


April 16th, 2013
4:47 pm

I grew up in Albany during the 90’s. I went to public school in Dougherty County. I went on to recieve my degree in Business from UGA. I don’t know what DownInAlbany is talking about, must be a parent that pays to send there child to Deerfield-Windsor Private School. If you are not from Albany should really go down there and find out the real reason why private schools exist in Albany. Trust me its not for the education.

GISA coach

April 17th, 2013
7:14 am

GISA is sad? I coach at a GISA school. I had 4 kids from the 2013 graduating class sign to play their sport at the collegiate level. That makes 5 out of 7 graduates in the last 3 years reach that distinction. The GISA has some great athletes and competitive teams. It is all about money. The GHSA is afraid to let us compete with them; they want everyone to come to their league so they can make more money for themselves. The GHSA is the sad one.


April 17th, 2013
7:48 am

GISA coach, scared is you.