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Boys' basketball: Say what?

October 18, 2010 |  8:05 am

2010 is going to be known as a time of confusion in trying to understand why some athletes have been given hardship waivers and others denied after transferring.

Once again, the Southern Section has left the public confused. Now, the office will say it's clear what the definition of hardship is: “An unforeseeable, unavoidable, uncorrectable act, condition or event, which imposes a severe and non-athletic burden on the student or his or her family."

So then, how does Michael Avery, a basketball player, get denied a hardship waiver? He attended Encino Crespi as a freshman, got a financial aid package to attend Montverde Academy in Florida as a sophomore, then returned to Crespi this season after the aid package was not offered. Alone, that's a financial hardship.

But the Southern Section denied it, so Avery will have to sit out his junior season unless he can convince a CIF appeals panel to reverse the decision.

Look, I'm for strict transfer rules. I have written for years about the need to crack down on parents, coaches and kids abusing and manipulating the rules to prevent athletes from moving from school to school for athletic reasons.

But I'm as confused as the general public in how hardship waivers are being given out or denied. And if I can't understand what's going on, how is a parent supposed to figure it out?

-- Eric Sondheimer