This fight is far from over.
And I fear it’ll have more twists and turns than the UFC 275 main event from Saturday night.
One second, the newly crowned champion Jiri Prochazka hurt former champion Glover Teixeira with long-range shots, and the next Teixeira had Prochazka wobbled and nearly finished with a submission attempt. These two went back-and-forth for 25 minutes up until Prochazka snuck a rear naked choke in with 28 seconds left to win this instant classic.
If Teixeira holds on and doesn’t tap, two of the three judges scorecards would have rewarded him with the majority decision.
And he would have kept his belt.
Now Eddie Bonine and the Louisiana High School Sports Association are looking to avoid Rapides Parish’s clutches to maintain this new definition of select and non-select.
Last Thursday the Rapides Parish School Board voted to pursue all legal action against the LHSAA after the executive committee redefined what it means to be a select school. In case you missed it, by a vote of 16-5, the committee voted to approve the new definition of select schools to include lab schools, magnet schools, schools with magnet components and charter schools, and parishes that allow open enrollment at all of its public schools and tuition-based schools.
That last part has caused quite the stir.
Last week I wrote this shakeup in the LHSAA would be a good thing for fans of high school athletics.
I still feel that way, and further down the road, I hope that’s the case.
But the conversations about whether or not the LHSAA got this right in defining select schools is a whole different topic entirely.
I’ve heard from coaches who downright disagree with the way select schools are defined. And they certainly have a point.
Oak Grove head coach Ryan Gregory, for instance, recently told The Morning Drive with Aaron and Jake the Tigers get players from across the parish to play football, but they have to sit out a year like Ouachita Parish schools. So why would Oak Grove then be considered select? Gregory struggled to see the difference between Oak Grove and other non-select schools like the ones in our parish.
“We sent our policy in,” Gregory said. “If we’re select, then other schools are going to have to be select because we have very similar policies.”
I see Gregory’s point as a valid one. While he states the Tigers will play anyone, any time, anywhere, he, like all of us really, just wants a level playing field.
If Oak Grove is select because it is the only football school in West Carroll Parish, why isn’t Many select?
The LHSAA has to provide satisfactory answers to coaches with similar questions, or we’ll get more lawsuits than changes in momentum to UFC’s title fight last Saturday.
Just like I wrote last week, there’s still work to be done in making the postseason more competitive for high school sports fans.
And after the fallout last week, I’m afraid we will have a few more headaches along the way before we get there.