Law & Policy: Governing Bodies
- HS Awaits NCHSAA Ruling on Possible Forfeits
by Joe Sirera September 2018
Page High School has submitted a report to the N.C. High School Athletic Association regarding the two football players who were academically ineligible for the first three games of the season.
- USA Gymnastics Culture Slow to Change
by Tim Evans and Marisa Kwiatkowski; Indianapolis Star September 2018
Even as USA Gymnastics fought to contain a broadening sex abuse scandal last year, it allowed an official accused of misconduct to sit on a committee judging his own accuser's performance, IndyStar has learned. When it came time to vote on who would attend the World Championships, that official cast his ballot for another athlete. One with a lower score. Even after USA Gymnastics was confronted about the official's apparent conflict of interest, a hearing panel upheld the selection. And the system that failed to detect and prevent that conflict remains in place today - raising questions about the potential for retaliation and the silencing of abuse survivors.
- Mayor Rescinds Recreation Department Nike Ban
by Paul Steinbach September 2018
A switch regarding the swoosh. Ben Zahn, the Kenner, La., mayor who last week banned his parks and recreation department from using taxpayer or booster funds to purchase Nike apparel for nine youth playgrounds has changed his mind amid political and legal pressure.
Zahn issued his directive Sept. 5, two days after Nike launched an advertisement marking the 30th anniversary of the company's "Just Do It" campaign with controversial former NFL quarter Colin Kaepernick as its focus. In the ad, Kaepernick, a divisive figure ever since sitting or kneeling during the national anthem before games beginning in August 2016 to protest racial injustice, is pictured with the caption, "Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything."
The ad prompted personal boycotts of the Nike brand across the country (even though sales have spiked since the ad's debut), but Zahn's ban drew national attention. That is what he regrets most, stating that his directive "placed Kenner in a false and unflattering light on the national stage." He rescinded it on the advice of the city attorney in the hopes of "bringing this city back together."
According to The Times-Picayune of New Orleans, two critics of the original directive voiced their satisfaction in its reversal.
"I was completely against the policy. I support inclusion and social justice," said Jefferson Parish Councilman Mark Spears Jr., generally an ally of Zahn's in his previous time on the Parish Council. "I have been in communication with Mayor Zahn to voice my disapproval with this policy and am grateful the policy has been rescinded."
"We're pleased the mayor reconsidered his divisive stance and rescinded this unconstitutional policy," said Alanah Odoms Hebert, the executive director of the ACLU of Louisiana. "The reversal of this ban is good news for the people of Kenner and all Louisianians, who have a constitutional right to express their political views free from government censorship or discrimination."
When Zahn was asked if he sought legal advice before issuing the ban in the first place, he stated, "There was consulting, but the city attorney at that point was understanding the motivation, what I was trying to do, and the Legal Department has stood behind that. But of course now we are seeing where this is going and we wanted to stop."
- MLB Commemorates 9/11 Anniversary
by Mike Fitzpatrick September 2018
Major League Baseball once again commemorated the anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks with ceremonies at ballparks all across the country. A moment of silence to honor victims and first responders was held before every game.
- Christian Gym Ads Removed from HS Football Field
by Andy Berg September 2018
A high school football field has become a battleground for the fight over religion in schools.
- Opinion: NCAA Polices Shoes Over Academic Fraud
by Dave Zweifel September 2018
The governing body that is supposed to "oversee" college athletics can't seem to bring itself to sanction sports obsessed universities that resort to academic fraud or their well-paid coaches who find a way to skirt a jungle of regulations, but the NCAA sure can bring down the hammer when it comes to shoes.
- Opinion: USA Gymnastics Upheaval Wholly Predictable
by Nancy Armour September 2018
The turmoil that marked Kerry Perry's brief tenure at USA Gymnastics was wholly predictable. And familiar to the entire U.S. Olympic movement. With USA Gymnastics needing a strong and knowledgeable leader to make amends for the Larry Nassar crisis and implement policies to ensure a horror like that will never happen again, the federation instead hired someone who knew nothing about the organization she would be running. Someone who kept on executives who helped foster, either actively or with their silence, the very culture she was tasked to change. Someone who relied too much on lawyers and not enough on common sense. Someone who bunkered down when she needed to be bold. Someone who preached transparency but practiced secrecy.
- Courts Not So Quick to Turn Away Trans Students
by Paul Anderson September 2018
Mack Beggs has won the Texas girls' 6A high school wrestling championship in the 110-pound weight class for the past two years. Mack would like to wrestle boys, but Mack was born a girl, and a University Interscholastic League rule requires him to wrestle athletes who match the gender on his birth certificate.
- How North America Landed the 2026 World Cup
by Jason Scott September 2018
The excitement of this year's World Cup is behind us, but North American soccer fans and venue operators can keep their fervor fresh as Canada, Mexico and the United States prepare to jointly host the event in 2026.
- Southern Illinois University Rethinks Activism Policy
by Andy Berg August 2018
Southern Illinois University is walking back a new policy that would have made any political activism by student-athletes in uniform grounds for dismissal.