The board voted 13-5 in favor of Shreveport’s “zero bid,” which included a minimum of $10,000 in affirmed sponsorship, over bids to abide at the Pontchartrain Center in Kenner or a move to the River Center in Baton Rouge.
The move — not decidedly — produced some reactions in the New Orleans and Baton Rouge angry communities.
“This comes bottomward to bodies authoritative decisions who accept no clue about the history of the action of angry in Louisiana,” Brother Martin drillmaster Robert Dauterive said. “A lot of the bodies on the LHSAA board are from schools that don’t alike accept wrestling.
“This is addition example, because its not football in Louisiana, and its ‘just wrestling’; the bodies who fabricated the accommodation don’t affliction that they aloof delivered a abhorrent draft to the sport.”
Dauterive’s acknowledgment seemed the arch amid coaches, but the prevailing capacity amid coaches post-decision were centered on money, biking acumen and admeasurement of the venue. Some were larboard grappling with the actuality that allegedly alike in aerial school, sports is a business.
The biking challenges surrounding the new breadth — Shreveport’s CenturyLink Center — struck a accurate chord, as the majority of the acreage is now adverse added than a 3-hour drive to compete.
“Ninety-five percent of the teams in Louisiana are amid beneath I-10,” Dauterive said. “There is no absorption in angry in Shreveport. There are actual few teams, and this makes it about absurd for anyone except for parents to biking up there for a weekend. Your fan abject for Louisiana angry is in New Orleans and Baton Rouge. And you’re now demography the approved angry admirers who would usually pop in to the tournament, you’re now demography them out of the equation.”
Said Brusly drillmaster Jimmy Bible: “They’re giving them a lot of concessions, the breadth for free, $10,000 affirmed and auberge perks. They did a business decision. It wasn’t the best accommodation for the action because 90 percent of the teams that battle are beneath the I-10 corridor.
“They looked at it as a business proposition. I don’t anticipate they took into annual the cardinal of schools and breadth they were located. The actuality of the bulk is that the LHSAA doesn’t accept breadth all the schools are amid and how to board the schools of breadth they are located.”
Some New Orleans and Baton Rouge breadth coaches were unsurprisingly in favor of the clash either actual at the Pontchartrain Center in Kenner or affective to the River Center in Baton Rouge so that they could abstain the access in biking costs and allure a beyond bulk of accepted angry admirers who appear artlessly due to its acceptable location.
“I am in favor of affective it from breadth the accompaniment clash is currently actuality held,” Rummel drillmaster John Orillion said. “We as a action are growing out of that location. But, numbers are key. We are growing out of that location because it is too acceptable to the admirers and spectators! That is acutely article that should be advised back authoritative a accommodation like this!”
Now, coaches argue, alone ancestors associates will be accommodating to accomplish the continued drive from New Orleans or Baton Rouge to Shreveport to watch the event, and that agency missing out on admission sales of schools’ fans, accepted angry admirers and others who pop in to watch the finals.
“I don’t anticipate you’re activity to get the fan support,” Catholic drillmaster Tommy Prochaska said. “I don’t anticipate the crowds are activity to travel. I don’t anticipate the LHSAA is abstention the action by any means. I aloof anticipate it comes bottomward to dollars and cents. I don’t anticipate it has annihilation to do with the argumentation of it. Sometimes we lose the action on argumentation on that as well.”
One of the advantages perceived by the board was that the LHSAA could lose out on admission sales at the antecedent breadth — the Pontchartrain Center — back the acceptance is that it’s not ample abundant to abode addition year of record-setting appearance and that the CenturyLink Center can authority a greater cardinal of people.
“Once again, this shows the best absorption of the kids are not factored in,” Dauterive said. “This is a carefully money decision. On top of that, they affirmation they set an appearance almanac (at Shreveport bristles years ago). That’s one affair they like to point out. The aftermost time it was in Shreveport, everybody had to booty their teams up bristles or six hours and kids were affected to go to every session.”
“Every actuality there was affected to go to every affair because there’s annihilation abroad to do there. There’s boilerplate abroad to escape to. And that’s why they had a acceptable army turnout.”
The CenturyLink Center in Shreveport is declared as an advance alike by those who disagree with the change. Seating, ameneties, concessions and aloof amplitude in accepted accept all been cited as advantages for the new venue. And some coaches remained aloof on the decision, with their abandoned focus artlessly actuality their team’s adeptness to appearance up about and attempt for a championship.
“Wherever the accompaniment clash is activity to be, Holy Cross will be there wrestling. Whether it’s in Shreveport, whether it’s in a swamp or whether it’s in New Orleans at the Pontchartrain Center,” Holy Cross drillmaster T.J. Miller said. “Either way, we’re activity to appearance up and we’re activity to be accessible to wrestle. It doesn’t accomplish a aberration to me. It could be in a parking lot for all I care.”
“It’s change and I apperceive a lot of bodies are afflictive with change,” Orillion said. “I like to be a absolute person, so I will say that no bulk what burghal the accompaniment clash is in, we will be alive as a aggregation appear the ultimate ambition of actuality accompaniment champions.
Garrett Galuszka can be accomplished at [email protected] or 504.826.3405.
Follow @GarrettGsports Tweet to @GarrettGsports
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