Official practice begins Aug. 4 for boys’ golf, Aug. 11 for all others
The Colorado High School Activities Association and its 346 member schools open the 94th school year with Boys’ Golf official practice on Aug. 4. All other sports start officially on Aug. 11. Student athletes in Cross Country, Field Hockey, Boys’ Golf, Football, Girls’ Gymnastics, Boys’ Soccer, Softball, Boys’ Tennis, Volleyball and Spirit anxiously await that starting date.
Prior to the start of practice, though, the CHSAA will conduct several meetings for school administrators, including the annual New AD/Principal’s and League Presidents/District Athletic Directors meetings, held in conjunction with CHSAA’s All-School Summit on July 31-Aug. 1. The New AD/Principal meeting starts at 8:00 a.m. on July 31, as does the District Athletic Directors Meeting. The League Presidents’ Meeting starts at 10:00 a.m. The All-School Summit begins at noon on July 31 and concludes at noon on Aug. 1. All the meetings will be held at the Denver Marriott South at Park Meadows (I-25 and Lincoln Avenue).
“The start of the new school year, which includes the beginning of the fall sports season, is one of the most exciting times in a student’s life. Certainly the start of fall practice is a bit more special because it starts the entire school year. The community-based feeling that high school sports bring to high schools remind each of us of our own roots. Schools have always been the hub of activities for neighborhoods and communities and that status remains unchallenged year in and year out,” CHSAA Commissioner Paul Angelico said.
Teams may start scrimmages on Aug. 7 for Boys’ Golf, Aug. 11 for Softball and Aug. 16 for all other sports, except football, which starts scrimmage Aug. 21. Aug. 21 also marks the first day of competition for all fall sports except Boys’ Golf (Aug. 7), Boys’ Tennis (Aug. 14) and Girls’ Softball (Aug. 15).
A major change in CHSAA by-laws allows for football (and all sports) to utilize what has commonly been known as “Zero Week” as a regular competition week. This allows for more flexibility in scheduling, especially in football.
In May 1921, a group of superintendents and principals met in Boulder and organized the Colorado High School Athletic Conference. The purpose of this organization was to better regulate and develop the interscholastic school athletic program.
There were nine leagues by the time the first constitution was published, including the Northern, North Central, Western Slope, Suburban, Southeastern, Arkansas Valley, South Central and San Juan Basin leagues.
The first champions crowned that school year were Colorado Springs in football, Greeley in basketball, and Fort Collins in track and field.
In 1924, the Colorado High School Athletic Conference joined the National Federation of State High School Associations and has remained an active member of that organization ever since.
Loveland’s R.W. Truscott was the Association’s first president and Eaton’s J.C. Casey its first secretary (commissioner). Truscott replaced Casey as secretary in December, 1926 and held that post until July, 1948 when Glenn T. Wilson became commissioner. Ray C. Ball took over the commissioner’s post in 1966 and remained in the office until Aug., 1986 when Ray Plutko assumed the duties. Bob Ottewill became the Association’s sixth commissioner in July 1990, followed by Bill Reader who served as Commissioner from 2002 until 2010. Angelico assumed the position on July 1, 2010
The CHSAA has had 58 presidents dating back to 1921. Its current president, Centauri Schools Superintendent Curt Wilson, is in the first year of a two-year term as president.
The Association enters the year with few changes on staff. Paul Angelico, in his 25th year at CHSAA, is Commissioner. Assistant Commissioners Bert Borgmann and Tom Robinson are in their 27th and 14th years on the staff, respectively. Meanwhile, Bethany Brookens and Harry Waterman are in their seventh years with the Association. Bud Ozzello enters is in his fifth year on the staff, while Jenn Roberts-Uhlig is in her third year, and Ryan Casey is in his second year with CHSAA as Director of Digital Media.
Donna Coonts serves as administrative assistant to Commissioner Angelico, while Whitney Webermeier (Borgmann), Rocky Railey (Brookens), Theresa Muniz (Waterman), Audra Cathy (Ozzello), Jane Boudreau (Roberts-Uhlig) and Monica Tillman (Robinson) assist the other administrators. Bookkeeper Kenzie Hewson and mailroom coordinator Sharon Garcia round out the Association staff.