Arkansas Activities Association Proposal on Competitive Equity Factor

LITTLE ROCK — The Arkansas Activities Association’s annual board meeting was held at 3 p.m. at the Statehouse Convention Center.

In it, a proposal that the competitive fairness factor would only apply to football was defeated by a vote of 104 to 42, while the other five were approved.

Each adopted proposal comes into effect this 2022-23 school year.

Under the current system, the Competitive Equity Factor, enacted in 2021, awards points based on performance in each sport to non-public schools that can adjust its ranking. Conducted over a four-year period, a program can be upgraded one ranking if it achieves 10 points during that period or downgraded if it achieves two points or less.

A state championship earns four points, a state runner-up earns three points, a playoff victory earns two, and a winning record earns one. These numbers are not combined but are only counted for each season by the highest achievement, so the maximum points for each season is four.

The proposal created by Greenbrier Schools was written because they felt that “the numbers prove that the dominance of non-state schools in all other sports is far less prevalent than in football” and that the policy creates

  • odd lectures
  • teams with several weeks off
  • non-public schools having “many teams” with girls and boys each playing in different conferences and therefore teams can only play one gender of the school on a conference game night
  • more difficulty scheduling non-conference games and filling schedules to the max
  • Delay in knowing which conference a team is in, slowing down the planning process
  • “forces” schools to play a classification since non-public schools are not counted in classification numbers

The Greenbrier Schools proposal won official support from the Arkansas Football Coaches Association on July 19.

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Proposal No. 2, passed 137-9, changes the number of games played for sports, which includes regular season tournaments.

Volleyball teams can now play 30 regular season games. For basketball, non-football schools can play 36 regular season games, while football schools can play 30. Football will have a 24-game limit in the regular season.

Arkansas High School Activities Association

Proposal No. 3, which received 216-2 support, defines “recruitment” and lists six potential penalty policies for those who attempt to recruit students for athletic purposes. These penalties may include probation, a fine of up to $1,000 and an invoice for investigation costs, forfeiture of competitions in which the athlete has participated, ineligibility of the athlete for up to one calendar year and coach or licensed staff member receiving a complaint of violation of the Arkansas Code of Ethics for Educators.

Proposal #4 (214-1) defines penalties for violations of rules or regulations, Proposal #5 (213-1) recognizes school board decisions regarding zoning of student attendance and Proposal No. 6 (212-4) clarifies the transfer rules.

This story will continue to be updated.

You can follow Bryant Roche on Twitter @BRocheSports and you can email him at [email protected]

Sara H. Byrd