“I don’t really know if it will hurt students' ability to play. It runs the potential. I think at the beginning it’s going to affect those students who don’t remember. But they’ll catch on and won’t forget.”
— Jeff Simon, Moffat County High School athletic director, about the proposed "No Pass, No Play" eligibility policy that would prevent any MCHS athlete failing even one class from playing
During the Maximum Commitment to Excellence meeting last month, there was a sense of growing concern expressed by members over the athletic eligibility rules for high school students in Moffat County.
Currently, students are allowed to participate in their sporting events and activities even if they are failing one class.
Moffat County High School has followed the Colorado High School Activities Association eligibility guidelines, allowing for one F.
But concerns at the Maximum Commitment to Excellence meeting centered around the issue of allowing a student to fail in one arena of their life while asking them for their very best in another.
Moffat County High School athletic director Jeff Simon, along with other members of the MCHS administration, is in the process of changing eligibility requirements so students will no longer be able to participate in games or activity events if they are failing even one class.
Simon said the Moffat County Board of Education would like to see the transition happen, and Simon is aiming to implement the new rule at beginning of the second semester of this school year.
“It’s still early in the process. We’ve put together a preliminary plan and are working on it with coaches, MCHS staff and parents,” Simon said.
The “No pass, no play,” policy would include a warning report printed on Mondays, including a letter and phone call about a players ineligibility. The student will then have until noon on Tuesday to turn in any missing assignments.
The eligibility list will then be printed again at 8 a.m. on Wednesday. If a student is still failing a class they will be ineligible to participate in games or competitions from that Wednesday to the following Wednesday.
Simon said some coaches already had their own baseline eligibility requirements that were more strict than the CHSAA baseline.
“I don’t really know if it will hurt students' ability to play," Simon said. "It runs the potential. I think at the beginning it’s going to affect those students who don’t remember. But they’ll catch on and won’t forget.”
Taft Cleverly, a junior at MCHS and boys basketball player, said he doesn’t think the no pass no play policy will affect him much.
“It might shape up some kids that don’t do well,” Cleverly said. “But it’s not that hard to stay away from D’s and F’s.”
Cleverly said he thinks the policy shows that being a student athlete means you have to have everything in line.
Matt Ray, the MCHS girl’s basketball head coach, said he likes the idea of the new policy, adding he didn’t think it would be an issue for his team.
“Our girls really strive to succeed at everything,” Ray said.
In reference to the baseball team, for which he is an assistant coach, he said it might motivate some of the boys who tend to slack off a bit sometimes.
“I think it will make them focus and be better all around,” Ray said.
Darian Warden can be reached at 875-1793 or firstname.lastname@example.org