The Norman Transcript


June 4, 2013

Ego, unchecked power rule at OSSAA

NORMAN — On Tuesday, the Oklahoma Secondary Schools Activities Association (OSSAA) will rule on the eligibility appeal of David Cornwell, an incoming senior student-athlete from Norman North who is the consensus No. 1 high school quarterback in the country. His list of schools recruiting him is voluminous.

The issue is whether Cornwell has already exhausted his four years of high school eligibility, since he was unable to complete a semester of school and football in fall 2011 because he made the decision to put family first and served as caregiver to his mother, who was suffering from a debilitating four-month illness that could have claimed her life.

Cornwell, who was not even a major football prospect at the time, said that he made a decision based on what was best for his family. David chose his mother over football, and the OSSAA is now holding his senior year hostage.

This summer, along with Rep. Marty Quinn, R-Claremore, and Rep. Jason Murphey, R- Guthrie, we will conduct an interim legislative study to review how the OSSAA works and make recommendations to Speaker T.W. Shannon.

I hear from student-athletes and parents weekly who have, at best, received poor customer service and, at worst, been treated with malice by this organization. Why? Ego and unchecked power rule the day for this pseudo-government entity whose membership is “voluntary,” yet governs most Oklahoma high schools with an iron fist on issues related to athletics.

OSSAA is classified as a 501c3 nonprofit organization, but they derive millions from tournaments and fees from schools, which receive taxpayer dollars.

When public funds are implicated, there must be accountability and transparency. When the young people of this state are involved in athletics and other competitive activities, we must ensure fairness and access to an effective and expeditious review.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Congress should close gaps

    Of all of Edward Snowden’s revelations about electronic surveillance by the National Security Agency, the most unsettling was that the government was accumulating vast numbers of records about the telephone calls of American citizens. In ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Border obsession overlooks trade

    Texas Gov. Rick Perry made headlines recently by ordering 1,000 National Guard troops to the border. This bravado comes at a price: $12 million a month. Perry plans to send the bill the federal government. That’s one way to finance your ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Intercession badly needed in this world

    Yesterday was my feast day, or as the Italians call it, my “onomastico.” Since I live in the United States, it went completely unnoticed. If I lived in Italy, however, I would have been showered with cards and phone calls. That’s because ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Porch leap looked muchbigger as a kid

    It’s no secret that porch designs have changed over the years. Drive through new Norman developments and look at the porches. Most only have room for a potted plant and a spot to drop those UPS packages, no place for a porch swing or ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Keeping the war buried

    International outrage over the downing of a Malaysian passenger plane over Ukraine on July 17 does not appear to have affected either the actions of pro-Russia forces in that country or the material support Russia is offering the rebels. ...

    July 26, 2014

  • Gaza’s victims: civilians and peace

    After more than two weeks of fighting between Hamas and Israel, there is no question which side has the upper hand. Thursday’s strike on a U.N.-run school for Palestinian children increased the Palestinian death toll to more than 760. By ...

    July 26, 2014

  • Norman Forward builds momentum

    The quiet campaign to build momentum for a citywide public works project is beginning to attract some attention....

    July 20, 2014

  • Tax those trees out of here

    I read your editorial “Pesky red cedars” in the Norman Transcript of Tuesday, July 15, 2014. I have attended two meetings where the problem of the eastern red cedar trees was discussed. Because of the drought conditions in Oklahoma, we ...

    July 20, 2014

  • Make gun safety a health issue

    Quick, are you more likely to die by a bullet or in a car crash? Common sense would seem to suggest the latter. Cars are everywhere. We are an auto-obsessed nation. To be American is to drive — everywhere. Teenagers itch to get behind the ...

    July 20, 2014

  • They just want to be free ... maybe

    Massoud Barzani, president of Iraq’s semiautonomous Kurdistan region, rattled many cages this month when he announced in parliament that the KRG would be moving ahead soon on a referendum on independence from Iraq. If Kurdistan goes ahead ...

    July 20, 2014