By the end of a CIF Central Section Board of Managers meeting this morning in Porterville, Garces likely will be officially in the Southwest Yosemite League.
Several other significant changes in the Valley could take place, too. Among them is a proposal that would move all section volleyball finals to one rotating location each season, starting next fall with a site in Tulare or Kings County.
Also on the docket are proposals that would outlaw full-contact football practice in the summer -- currently a handful of districts, such as Clovis Unified, allow it, but the Kern High School District does not -- and several proposals that modify various sports' playoff structures. In football, baseball, softball and boys and girls soccer, the sixth division, for the smallest schools, could be eliminated.
The Board, which includes a representative of each league in the section, also will vote on the High Desert League's proposal to join the Central Section. The league, which includes Kern County teams California City, Desert, Frazier Mountain, Kern Valley and Rosamond, is in the Southern Section.
Section commissioner Jim Crichlow said he expects close votes, particularly on the volleyball finals proposal and the High Desert League, which would increase playoff travel for the section's small schools. But Crichlow said he's confident most of the changes will pass, including the one that will affect Kern the most directly.
"Garces has said they're not real happy about moving (to the SWYL), but they're not going to fight it," Crichlow said. "I think that'll pass."
The Board of Managers also will hear initial proposals that would move all football section finals to Bulldog Stadium in Fresno and all baseball section finals to Rawhide Stadium in Visalia. Those won't be voted on till October, but Stan Greene, KHSD director of school support services, said that the KHSD would be against either one, particularly the football proposal.
"None of our schools support that," said Greene, who is concerned that moving the finals would cost host schools revenue. "We would be open to discussion about it, but you're telling me those championships at Wasco or Ridgeview, all those people would have driven up to Fresno? There's got to be a better way for us to do it."