District scores a win in allowing more sports contacts
The term “this is a win-win” probably gets thrown around way too much but it’s easily the best description for Porterville Unified School District’s recent addition of two sports contacts for its high school teams. This coupled with less league games due to realignment gives teams substantially more scheduling opportunities for the larger East Yosemite League schools.
It raises the total number of contacts from 18 to 20 for all sports, but teams or their boosters must come up with the funds to cover the costs of the 19th and 20th contacts — such as entry fees, if any; transportation; etc.
PUSD, looking to cut costs, went from 20 to 18 contacts prior to the 2009-2010 sports season. The decision affected all sports but football, including both boys and girls sports.
Simply defined, a contact is one game. A tournament counts as two contacts no matter how many games are played, and the California Interscholastic Federation limits all sports to three or less tournaments, except for water polo and wrestling. Teams are usually guaranteed at least two games in tournaments.
In the past, teams were severely limited because after playing 16 league games all that remained were two contacts. Now, due to realignment, teams only play 10 EYL games, except for football, leaving room for another eight contacts fully supported by the district and, now due the recent board action, two additional contacts if the teams can foot the bill.
Basically, what the board is allowing, two contacts at no extra cost to the district, was presented to the PUSD superintendent in October 2010. The proposal did not gain any traction but did become a bone of contention with some of the sports community. The district felt doing this would create a haves vs. the have nots atmosphere wherein some teams would have an easier time raising funds.
By allowing the two contacts in this manner each team still has the same opportunities — they can choose to raise the funds or not.