Marysville High School Principal Aaron Cook and Athletic Director Joe Bline detailed several changes coming to the high school athletics department at the Marysville Board of Education’s Sept. 19 meeting.
“We think it will be for the betterment of our students in terms of resources and competitiveness,” Cook said.
Two new club sports will be added to the high school lineup but participants will be able to earn varsity letters.
MHS is partnering with the YMCA to bring club gymnastics to the school. In trade, the district will allow the YMCA to set up its gymnastics equipment in the old Maple Street Middle School gym.
“This comes at no cost to the athletic department or the school. They will compete as Marysville High School in the OCC in our division,” Bline said.
A lacrosse team also will compete in the OCC this year for the first time and Bline would like those athletes to be able to earn a varsity letter as well.
“First of all, they are competing in the OCC like all the other sports do,” he said. “They are competing for us with our name on their chest. They are following the same rules that the other sports follow.
“Also, they get a physical education exemption, which helps them, and on their college application, they can say they lettered in a varsity sport. Any dollar you can get at college is a bonus.”
The club sports come at no cost to the district other than for varsity awards for letter-winners. The district will not pay the coaches or provide transportation. Lacrosse team boosters will be responsible for any compensation for the coaches.
The district will, however, help keep coaches certified and maintain online schedules.
Both gymnastics and lacrosse will compete as MHS club sports this year.
Bline has no specific date for when the YMCA plans to move its gymnastics equipment to the Maple Street Middle School building but said it will be soon. The equipment is currently housed at the YMCA Annex, 233 W. Sixth St.
Swimming is also facing changes at MHS. Both swim coaches retired last year so Bline told the board he has a plan to address the coaching need and the rental fees the school pays.
“Swimming is probably the most expensive sport we have outside of football,” he said. “We paid almost $7,000 last year in pool fees, which was very expensive.”
Current expenses for the school include coaches’ salaries, lane rental, transportation and dry land training.
Bline wants MHS to partner with the YMCA to maintain the swim team as a varsity sport.
As part of the partnership, the YMCA will provide the coach, former Ohio State University assistant swim coach Craig Faircloth, along with two assistant coaches. The Y will also provide lane rental and dry land training.
The MHS athletic department will pay $3,500 for the program. Swim boosters will pay $1,750, a donor is paying $1,750, and athletes will pay a $200 pay-to-participate fee plus a $200 membership fee to the YMCA.
The setup is much like that for the MHS golf team, which pays a membership fee to the Marysville Golf Club for practice time on the course.
This partnership also takes effect this school year.