Blanchard River Buzz

A blog for rabid sports fans in the Findlay Area. Maintained by Findlay Courier sports writer Jamie Baker. The opinions expressed are my own crazed ramblings and not those of my employer the Findlay Publishing Company and its subsidiaries.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Can't we all just get along...

I don’t know why I am writing about this issue today it’s probably one better suited for another day closer to the state football finals.

It’s the whole Public School vs. Private School debate. There are a lot of people on both sides who feel passionately about the issue. Some say private schools should have their own tournaments while others say they raise the bar for all schools to become better and if you have separate championships, there won’t be a true state champ.

After coaching at both public and private schools over the years and attending a private school during my athletic career, I do understand the concerns of those on both sides of the fence. I mean private schools do win an unproportional share of state championships in Ohio and clearly have some advantages that their public school brethren do not have.

That said, there is a big difference between private schools and my biggest beef is painting them all with the same broad brush. I mean look at my alma mater St. Wendelin or Marion Catholic for that matter. They are a long way from being a Cincinnati Elder or Cleveland St. Ignatius. They are both in relatively small communities and are struggling just to keep kids in the classroom let alone field competitive sports teams.

But to some it doesn’t matter. When we had a few decent wrestling teams when I was coaching there, there were some uninformed goofs on Internet message boards that even said I think St. Wendelin recruits wrestlers after we whipped their butts in a tournament. Damn I can tell you, there was no one on our team that didn’t attend either St. Wendelin or St. Michael Catholic School in elementary school and in fact, during the 13 years I coached there we never got one transfer into the school for our program although we had about 7 or 8 wrestlers in our elementary and junior high system that transferred out to other schools when they went to high school.

Some public schools have a clear advantage though. Take Hopewell-Loudon’s upswing in a lot of sports. I read an article in the Review Times last week here about H-L and open enrollment. It said that while other area schools have seen a decline in enrollment in recent years, H-L has remained stable thanks to open enrollment. A total of 28.8 percent of Hopewell-Loudon’s students are there through open enrollment. Wow it makes you wonder if any of their success in football hs anything to do with open enrollment. If so, then good for them. Hopewell-Loudon is an excellent school with terrific marks on state achievement tests and when you are a good school parents and students will flock to you. It’s something the H-L community should be very proud of.

Back to the public vs. private debate, I do realize there is a problem at private schools especially in urban areas like Cleveland, Cincinnati and Columbus. I guess I’d reluctantly move toward putting a multiplier on the enrollment of private schools say take their current enrollment and multiply it by 1.5, which would likely move them up a division in most sports. But that still doesn’t do anything to the private school powers like Moeller and Ignatius who are already in Division I.


BROWNS: Just a few tidbits from yesterday’s Cleveland Browns debacle in Cincinnati. These are from Plain Dealer staff writer Mary Kay Cabot’s Browns Notebook…
Points needed: The Browns have scored 26 or fewer points in 23 consecutive games, dating to a 58-48 loss at Cincinnati on Nov. 28, 2004. They have scored 20 or fewer in eight straight.
Postseason or bust: None of the 24 playoff teams from the previous two seasons began 0-2.

COVERING THE SPREAD: Anyone else find it interesting that Ohio State kicked a 52-yard field goal with 1:14 left in the game against Cincinnati Sunday. The point spread heading into the game was 29.5. The late FG made the final score 37-7...any conspiracy theorists out there?

Monday’s Findlay Courier sports round up
Bryan shut out by Napoleon
Plain Dealer Browns Coverage
Old Fort 2nd, Ottawa-Glandorf 5th in latest prep volleyball poll
Ross wins an overtime thriller
Reed rushes for 385 yards in Ashland Crestview win
Tiffin Advertiser Tribune sports section including game stories from Saturday on Hopewell-Loudon and Calvert


  • At 8:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I did wonder about the point spread at the Buckeye game. Going into the 4th, there's no way you'd think they would cover, and yet they did.
    As for the public vs. private, I really don't have a problem with it. Life's full of choices, and for education, people should be able to choose. I question the loyality of a person who moves to a neighboring school district after going to their local school for years, but they must live with that decision.

  • At 6:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Doesn't little, but mighty Hardin Northern have open enrollment. And somehow gets athletes out of there district to play?

    Its simple. Good coaches will always attract good players. No recruiting required. That is why it has always worked at the Catholic schools (which I went to in Columbus and by the way why I went to that school).


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