Bits and Pieces Worth Sharing
My desk is starting to clutter up and figure it might be wise to list a variety of tidbits that I had wanted to share with you - before it's time for my year-end cleaning and, well, things disappear. You know what I mean.
I see the Ontario Trillium Foundation, an agency of the Ontario Government, is dishing out tax dollars - exactly how much I do not know - to schools so students can be introduced to something new or what they call "traditional or non-traditional sports". The Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations has been given the money and to award it at $800 a pop for something called Try Day.
One of your local schools will be able to apply for money so students can learn about sports like disc golf, tubing, snowshoeing, Aussie rules football, orienteering, frisbee, tchoukball and even boxing. That should go well with the anti-bullying stuff.
Let's see, what else. A few people were upset that we made references to 73-0 football scores. We didn't make it up, the games happened. Think that was bad? Well, how about this high school game: Ridley, from St. Catharines, beat Bishop's College from Lennoxville, Que. 101-0 in what was believed to be the first interscholastic match between Ontario and Quebec prep schools. My friend in Durham sent this to me - along with the date when it happened. Back on Nov. 14, 1938 - and published in the Star.
Oh yes, I believe Toronto's Runnymede Collegiate won four Ontario boys' basketball titles - the last in 1990. John Petrushchak, now retired, was coach of all four. They were called the Redmen back then. But that name was changed because it was politically incorrect. Now, called the Ravens, Runnymede still has a basketball team - but only seven players on the senior squad, which is 0-2 in league play.
On the topic of sports nicknames, West Hill is being forced to get rid of the "Warriors". Students will have to come up with a replacement that has to be approved by the school administration. It'll likely be an animal or bird. I can remember the commotion when Toronto's Nelson A. Boylen high school sports teams were called the Bullets. No more, and I don't have to explain.
Wrestling appears to be coming back slowly in the Toronto Catholic Board. Those who have been around long enough remember how everything seemed to have stopped following a tragic injury in that sport way back in 1987. Back then, a 16-year-old Cardinal Newman High student was attempting an over-the-hip throw during a league competition and fell awkwardly on his head, suffering a broken neck and crushed vertebrae.
And, I can remember when girls wrestled with boys - because there was not enough interest or female teams. One female teenager created a stink with the Ontario Human Rights Commission because she wanted to wrestle. Now, lots of girls wrestling - and against girls.
Why is there very little mention from coaches about high school swimming? A great sport - and involving thousands of students too. Over in Durham Region, just the right sport for teenagers - bowling. Yes, they have a league. Last I heard, no school had a bowling alley.
And back to OFSAA one more time, the organization is running a Women's Sports School in 2010. It seems like it might be to attract more women to coaching since those numbers are sagging. They call it a professional development session for teacher-coaches from across the province to share ideas and get motivated. I'm not joking. That's exactly what it says in the pre-event notice.