The proposal to move the high school boys golf season from the spring to the fall beginning in 2021 has hit a snag.
The Connecticut Association of Athletic Directors and The Connecticut High School Coaches Association executive board both raised some concerns regarding whether there will be enough golf courses to host all of the teams if the move goes through, according to Gregg Simon, associate executive director for the CIAC.
“One of the questions they raised was they weren’t sure our courses will be able to accommodate the move overall,” Simon said. “In our history, the CIAC has never moved (a sport) to a different season. This is kind of unique. We are trying to be careful, to listen to our membership. Often times, if you do things quickly, problems arise later.”
Among those schools raising concerns about the move is Killingly. Kevin Marcoux, the school’s athletic director and golf coach, sent a letter to the CIAC Board of Controls in October.
Among Marcoux’s concerns include weather when the state championship matches would be held in late October. That includes the impact of leaves on the course.
“My biggest rationale to not moving to the fall is having our state championships in potentially bad weather,” Marcoux said. “How is this move good for kids? To me, the single greatest day of a high school golfer’s career is the state championship or league championship, and that can be compromised with potentially bad weather.”
Another of Marcoux’s points is how the change will affect smaller schools. The move will force some athletes to have to choose between golf and a fall sport.
“My starting lineup has four fall athletes on it,” Marcoux said. “My roster the last four years, 75 percent of them play a fall sport. My program would be devastated for about five years.”
When asked about that particular issue, Simon said, “I’ve been told by many country club professionals that the best golfers we have in the state are tennis players. So in the spring, they have to make a choice.”
Marcoux said the ECC athletic directors, including Killingly, voted down the proposal 15-4 to move boys golf from the spring to the fall.
This proposal originated from both the FCIAC and SWC leagues. The CIAC golf committee came up with a more detailed proposal to move forward for a vote after the majority of high school golf coaches surveyed were in favor of the move.
Girls golf will remain in the spring season.
“We may go two divisions for girls golf,” Simon said. “It has grown throughout the state. Accommodating full teams (for both boys and girls golf) on courses has become a major problem.”
Simon also said that Joe Velardi, a member of the golf committee, is in the process of contacting every single golf course in Connecticut to gauge each to see if they can accommodate the move.