AIA Response Regarding Tempe and Saguaro High School Football Game

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AIA statement regarding the game played between Tempe and Saguaro High Schools

100 years at the AIA

The Arizona Interscholastic Association is a voluntary association of public and private Arizona high schools and serves as the governing body to promote fair and equitable competition between member schools. As an organization, the AIA oversees interscholastic activities that create personal development opportunities with a balanced focus on academics and extracurricular activities. The student participants and their overall safety is always at the forefront of the AIA’s actions, policies and decision making.

On September 7, 2012, the football game between member schools Tempe and Saguaro High School ended after Tempe High School forfeited the game shortly before half time. Tempe High School took the position that they did so for the safety of its players. This forfeiture along with the allegations made against Saguaro High School have been brought to the AIA for consideration. The AIA provides a process, under the organization's bylaws and the National Federation of High School Associations (NFHS) contest rules, which allow both schools the opportunity to come to an amicable conclusion so both teams can carry on with the season.

After thoroughly reviewing the game breakdown, video tapes and reports from each school, the AIA believes the officials and referees acted appropriately. The game tapes and reports establish that both team committed un-sportsman like conduct penalties. Penalty calls were appropriately made against each side.

Total Penalties: Saguaro 16 - Tempe 14                                     
Personal Fouls: Saguaro 5 - Tempe 1                    
Unsportsmanlike Conduct: Saguaro 1 - Tempe 3                     

Additionally, a Saguaro player, and Tempe Assistant Coach were each ejected from the game. No evidence has been provided that either team deliberately attempted to cause injury.

Today, the AIA facilitated a meeting between the member high school administrators to share the reports and discuss the findings. As stated in their joint press release, Scottsdale Unified and Tempe Union school districts will continue to work with the Arizona Interscholastic Association (AIA) and support its investigation. All parties concerned are committed to ensuring that students are provided an opportunity to compete in interscholastic activities while adhering to the constitution and by-laws of the AIA.

If sanctions are warranted against either team, it will be decided and announced by the AIA Board of Directors at the next scheduled board meeting on October 22, 2012.

Contact the AIA on the AIA365 FACEBOOK PAGE

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