(Excerpts from this article were taken from Jason Frakes article in the Louisville Courier-Journal 5/20/10)
There's a new commissioner for the Kentucky High School Athletic Association and he's ready to start counting strikes. Not the ones that baseball and softball tossers across the Commonwealth fire into catcher's mitts...the ones hurled down wooden lanes in Kentucky bowling alleys that knock down ten pins
Julian Tackett will have bowling installed as the newest sport in the KHSAA since fast pitch softball (1995) within the next two years and is going to make it one of his top priorities during his first few weeks on the job.
What's next? Archery and bass fishing?
Actually, both activities are approaching 20% participation in Kentucky high schools, the benchmark for an athletic activity to be considered for formal sport/championship status
It's not like bowling is anything new around the Louisville area. There's actually been a state high school bowling tournament held since 1992, sponsored by the Kentucky Bowling Proprietors Association. 58 schools have bowling teams and last year Louisville Pleasure Ridge Park won the girls title. 19 of the teams come from the Louisville metro area.
I've known plenty of bowlers who have participated in the high school ranks and several who have parlayed that success into partial college scholarships. Kentucky has several nationally recognized and ranked collegiate teams, including the ones at Bellarmine University, Pikeville University and Morehead State University. The sport teaches many of the same things that other high school sports do...teamwork, practice, competition, good sportsmanship and learning from instruction.
For the KHSAA to consider putting bowling into the official ranks of sports where an official state-championship event is held brings up some interesting possibilities:-Will there be a class system, like exists in football? Does a large school, like PRP or Manual have an unfair advantage in the sport...compared to a smaller school like Trimble County or Dayton?
-When would the season take place and how would events be scored? Total pins, total games won, handicaps inclusion and transfer rules...will they be included?
-Will schools now need to hire bowling coaches and will they be required to be certified teachers as well?
-Will there be referees and halftime breaks for the participants? And will cheerleading squads be allowed to attend, perform and raise crowd support?
I always figured that lacrosse or field hockey would be the next official sport added to the current list of 19 sports sanctioned by the KHSAA but it looks like bowling may be rolling ahead of it.
A couple of things for sure about the impending sport inclusion in the KHSAA fold...beer frame definitely won't be an option and the rest of the state will do their best to beat and belittle Louisville area schools...like we see in all the other 19 sports. We'll probably have that same sad and sorry debate about creating separate public and private school divisions and there will be official equipment and uniform rules and regulations.
It's enough to make you throw a 7-10 split...but not quite persnickety enough to send me to Bass Pro Shops for my high school approved regulation tackle and reel.
Bowl on, Kentucky...and make sure the oil pattern is uniform for all events.
Adrienne Johnson has reminded me by e-mail that there is still one more chance to see Angel McCoughtry and the Atlanta Dream in the Indianapolis area for this WNBA season. Discounted tickets are available for UofL fans to go see the Dream take on the Fever on Aug. 6th. For more info...you can always shoot A.J. an e-mail at:
Based on the way the Dream has been playing lately...winless since the All-Star break, Angel could use all the support in the seats she can get. Remember, if you go...watch out for the speed traps on I-65 around Sellersburg...