Pacific League to Try Pilot Sports Program

Burbank High athletic director tries to create system to help make a more level playing field.

BHS boys basketball vs Arcadia (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

In an effort to help Pacific League sports teams play competition that is more aligned with their athletic ability, Burbank High athletic director Patrick McMenamin devised a pilot proposal that received support from six of the eight schools in a vote Tuesday. Glendale and Crescenta Valley highs voted against the proposal. Burbank, Burroughs, Muir, Pasadena, Arcadia and Hoover highs supported the proposal.

The competitive equity pilot program will be instituted for the new school year for one year. It will then be evaluated to see if it is something to continue with moving forward.
Sports affected by the proposal are the ones that traditionally see league rivals play one another twice. These sports include volleyball, soccer, basketball, tennis, baseball and softball.

(Photo By: Edward Tovmassian)

Under the new plan that McMenamin drafted, all teams would face one another at least once in a first round. Once that first round or first half of the league season is completed, the top four teams in the standings would move into a top tier bracket and the bottom four would move into a bottom tier.
The teams in each tier would play each another two more times. The first three teams from the top tier would earn automatic berths into the CIF playoffs. The fourth and or last-place team in the top tier would also earn a playoff berth unless it had lost to the top team in the bottom tier during the first round of the playoffs.
The winner of the bottom tier would have a chance to make the playoffs if it defeated the fourth-place team of the top tier or perhaps as a wild-card entry if a place is available in the CIF division that team is assigned to.
The two schools that voted against the change cited the potential for scheduling conflicts as the reason to stick to the traditional method of school playing its league rivals twice – once at home and once on the road.

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