MONTGOMERY – Wanda Gilliland, the first female to become an assistant director with the Alabama High School Athletic Association, announced Wednesday her plans to retire effective June 1, 2017. She made the announcement at the AHSAA Central Board of Control’s October meeting held at the AHSAA office.
“It has been an honor and privilege to work with Wanda Gilliland,” AHSAA Executive Director Steve Savarese said. “She is the consummate professional and a dedicated educator. Wanda was the first woman hired as a member of the AHSAA Executive Staff.
“She worked first with former Executive Director Dan Washburn. She has worked vigorously on behalf of the AHSAA since 1996 to elevate athletic opportunities for all students, particularly the female student-athletes. We wish her well in her retirement. We will be forever grateful for her service to this organization and to the student-athletes in this state.”
Gilliland, who spent 16 years as a teacher and coach at Hamilton High School before joining the AHSAA in 1996 when Dan Washburn was serving as executive director, will conclude 20 years with the AHSAA next June.
“I have been blessed to have had two jobs in my life that I have loved, and I also have had two families that I also love,” said Gilliland. “The AHSAA has been my second family for the past 20 years, and I will miss them all so much. Working at the AHSAA has been such a rewarding experience. It is a great organization. I have been fortunate to work for two outstanding executive directors, first Mr. Washburn and currently Mr. Savarese. Both men are incredible leaders who gave me a chance to make a difference.”
Gilliland has served in many leadership roles in the AHSAA and nationally with the National Federation of High School Associations (NFHS). She currently is serving as the chairperson of the NFHS Softball Rules Committee. The NFHS honored her in 2015 in New Orleans at its 96th annual Summer Meeting with the prestigious NFHS Citation Award. The award honors individuals who have made contributions to the NFHS, state high school associations, athletic director and coaching professions, the officiating avocation and fine arts/performing arts programs. It is one of the most highly regarded achievements in high school athletics and performing arts.
A graduate of Marion County High School and Athens State College, she served as a teacher and coach/athletic director at Hamilton High School from 1979-1996 where her girls’ basketball teams compiled a 301-96 record, won a state championship in 1990, finished runner-up the next year and won the Marion County tournament seven times.
She has played a vital role in the development of state championship programs in volleyball, softball, basketball and cross country. She has helped govern eligibility requirements through involvement with school audits, investigations and foreign exchange student regulations. Also, she has played a key role in developing state championship venues at neutral sites for all championships.
“My reward comes when I see the smiles on the faces of the players who have an opportunity to compete in a regional or championship event,” she said. “The experiences and memories for them will last a lifetime.”
Gilliland has received several coach-of-the-year honors and has served on the NFHS basketball, softball and spirit rules’ committees. She currently chairs the NFHS Softball Rules Committee. She was inducted into AHSAA Sports Hall of Fame in 2011 and the Marion County Sports Hall of Fame in 2001.
INDIANAPOLIS, IN (October 12, 2016) — New online courses for music teachers/directors and volleyball officials have been added to the available courses through the NFHS Learning Center at www.NFHSLearn.com.
“Introduction to Interscholastic Music” is the first online course for music teachers and directors and joins “Introduction to Music Adjudication” as music courses available through the NFHS Learning Center. “Officiating Volleyball: Ball Handling” is first of several sport-specific officiating courses that will be offered in various sports.
“Introduction to Interscholastic Music,” which is offered free of charge through the NFHS Learning Center, is designed to provide an overview of best practices in the music classroom and interscholastic music competitions. Although the course is useful for all music teachers, it is designed to meet the needs of individuals who are just beginning their careers as music teachers.
The “Introduction to Interscholastic Music” course will help new teachers in identifying their roles and responsibilities, identifying proficiency and promoting growth within music ensembles and improving the music classroom experience by establishing goals.
The skills taught in the course introduce and reinforce time-tested guidelines and techniques that music educators of any level of proficiency can use in directing music programs across the United States.
“Officiating Volleyball: Ball Handling,” which is available for $10 for NFHS Officials Association members and $20 for non-members, provides tips and techniques that officials need to make correct ball-handling calls in volleyball. Video examples of various contacts by each position are provided to assist officials in visually identifying ball-handling faults and legal player action.
Units covered include Introduction to Ball Handling, Rules Governing Ball Handling, Techniques to Train the Eye, Variables and External Stimuli, and Overview of Each Skill. Short comprehension quizzes and “you make the call’ scenarios are scattered throughout the course.
The addition of these two courses continues the new direction of the NFHS Learning Center to expand its reach to contest officials, students, performing arts teachers/directors and others from its original mission of coaching education courses.
After starting with two courses – Fundamentals of Coaching and First Aid for Coaches – in 2007 through the NFHS Coach Education Program, the NFHS Learning Center now offers 47 online courses, including 22 that are offered free of charge. Since the launch of www.NFHSLearn.com in 2007, more than 4.7 million courses have been delivered.
MONTGOMERY – Eighteen AHSAA football games are slated to be live-streamed by the NFHS Network this weekend over the NFHS Network School Broadcast Program platform. A strong slate of non-region games are set including Florence (1-4) vs. Bob Jones (401), Central-Phenix City (3-1) vs. unbeaten Opelika (5-0), Hartselle (5-0) vs. Russellville (4-0), Handley (2-2), fresh off its upset of defending 4A state champion Leeds at unbeaten Lanett (5-0), and in one game Thursday night, Pinson Valley (3-2) vs. Shades Valley (2-2) and Jeff Davis (2-3) takes on Sidney Lanier (3-1) at Cramton Bowl. All games currently uploaded are listed below.
Those with NFHS Network subscriptions can tune in to any of these football contests. For more information and instructions on how to subscribe, go to www.ahsaa.com and then click on the NFHS Network icon on the front page of the website or go to www.nfhsnetwork.com.
AHSAA member high schools produce these contests through the NFHS Network School Broadcast Program (SBP). Interested schools can contact Matt Abramson at:
Matt Abramson|Southeast Territory Manager
Powered by PlayOn! Sports
NFHS NETWORK GAMES Sept. 22-23
Sep 22 - 6:45 PM
Jeff Davis vs. Sidney Lanier
AHSAA: Jeff Davis HS
Sep 23 - 7:00 PM
Albertville vs. Boaz
AHSAA: Albertville HS
Arab vs. Brewer
AHSAA: Arab HS
Sep 23 - 6:50 PM
Ardmore vs. Randolph
AHSAA: Randolph HS
Sep 23 - 6:30 PM
Autaugaville vs. Billingsley
AHSAA: TriCounty Sports
Beauregard vs. Northview
AHSAA: Northview HS
Sep 23 - 6:45 PM
Carver vs. Lee (Montgomery)
AHSAA: Robert E. Lee HS
Central-PC vs. Opelika
AHSAA: Opelika HS
Cullman vs. Fayette County
AHSAA: Cullman HS
Florence vs. Bob Jones
AHSAA: Florence HS
Handley vs. Lanett
Hartselle vs. Russellville
AHSAA: Russellville HS
Houston Acad. vs. Goshen
AHSAA: Goshen HS
Murphy vs. Saraland
AHSAA: Saraland HS
Pinson Valley vs. Shades Valley
AHSAA: Shades Valley HS
Tuscaloosa Co. vs. Hillcrest-Tusc.
AHSAA: Hillcrest HS
Lawrence Co. vs. East Lawrence
AHSAA: Lawrence Co. HS
Theodore vs. Enterprise
AHSAA: Enterprise HS
MONTGOMERY – Hoover High School’s NFHS Network School Broadcast Program earned the NFHS Network School Broadcast Program’s highest award, elite status, for the 2015-16 school year, according to an announcement from the NFHS Network.
The SBP program produced by Hoover High School and its instructor Jeff Lloyd was the AHSAA’s only school to receive the Elite status. Nine others earned NFHS Network Select status: Albertville, Baldwin County of Nay Minette, Boaz, Florence, Hartselle, Jacksonville, McGill-Toolen Catholic of Mobile, Prattville and Saraland high schools.
Each summer the NFHS Network recognizes schools in the School Broadcast Program that have done an outstanding job throughout the previous school year. Elite and Select schools demonstrate professional, excellent broadcasting skills while covering sports and other events at their schools. These schools distinguished themselves as leaders among the 1,500+ schools involved in the School Broadcast Program, and the NFHS Network applauds them for their continued dedication and contributions to the Network.
Florence High School’s NFHS School Broadcast Program has been a leader nationally with its quality broadcasting and was recognized in 2015 and 2016 for its excellence in broadcasting. Directed by Randy Bruce, a faculty member and coach at Florence, the student-run live-streaming broadcast network was named NFHS Network’s Best Live Sports Broadcast for both years. Florence also was a finalist for best original programming in the 2015-16 school year. Albertville High School’s Tyler May was one of three finalists for NFHS Network Teacher of the Year.
The NFHS Network’s School Broadcast Program is continuing to add schools from the AHSAA with more than 40 AHSAA contests live-streamed last weekend through the NFHS Network’s School Broadcast Program platform.
The AHSAA applauds these schools and hope that all our schools continue to strive to produce outstanding programming for their NFHS Network SBP.
We continue to be amazed at the quality of the coverage and the talents of our student broadcasters and look forward to viewing our schools’ NFHS Network productions this school year.
The NFHS Network has announced the list of football games currently uploaded by member schools to be live-streamed over the NFHS Network platform this weekend. Saraland High School will live-stream its game with LeFlore tonight. Among the other games Friday is the much anticipated Opelika vs. Auburn set for Opelika High School.
All three Champions Challenge games last week were archived by the NFHS Network.
A total of 19 games are slated. Those with NFHS Network subscriptions can tune in to any of these football contests. For more information, go to www.ahsaa.com and then click on the NFHS Network icon on the front page of the website or go to www.nfhsnetwork.com
Schools produce these contests through the NFHS Network School Broadcast Program (SBP). Interested schools can contact Matt Abramson at:
NFHS NETWORK GAMES AUG. 25 - 26
NFHS SBP Producer
Aug 25 - 7:00 CDT
Park Crossing vs. Robert E. Lee
Robert E. Lee High School
Aug 25 - 6:00 CDT
John LeFlore vs. Saraland
Saraland High School
Aug 26 - 6:30 CDT
Oak Mountain vs. Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa
Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa High School
Fairhope vs. Foley
Foley High School
Marbury vs. Holtville
Aug 26 - 6:45 CDT
Whitehaven vs. Florence
Florence High School
Opelika vs. Auburn
Opelika High School
Prattville vs. Stanhope Elmore
Prattville High School
Aug 26 - 7:00 CDT
Deshler vs. Russellville
Russellville High School
Alexandria vs. Jacksonville
Jacksonville High School
Albertville vs. Arab
Albertville High School
Ariton vs. Goshen
Goshen High School
McGill-Toolen vs Davidson
McGill-Toolen Catholic High School
Arab High School
Enterprise vs. Northview
Northview High School
Carver-Montgomery vs. Jeff Davis
Jefferson Davis High School
North Jackson vs. Cullman
Cullman High School
Muscle Shoals vs. Spain Park
Muscle Shoals High School
Davidson vs. McGill-Toolen Catholic
INDIANAPOLIS, IN (August 11, 2016) – Led by an encouraging report in football participation nationwide, the number of participants in high school sports increased for the 27th consecutive year in 2015-16 according to the annual High School Athletics Participation Survey conducted by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS).
Based on figures from the 51 NFHS member state high school associations, which includes the District of Columbia, the number of participants in high school sports reached an all-time high of 7,868,900 – an increase of 61,853 from the previous year.
After a decline of almost 10,000 participants in football the previous year, the number of boys playing 11-player football in 2015 was almost identical to 2014 with a drop of just 309 – from 1,083,617 to 1,083,308.
While some states reported a decline in football participation in 2015, 24 states registered increases in boys participation in 11-player football. When combining boys and girls participation in 6-, 8-, 9- and 11-player football, the number of participants increased 138 – from 1,114,253 to 1,114,391.
“The NFHS and its member state associations have taken significant steps over the past 10 years to minimize the risk of participation in football and all high school sports, so this report on the continued strong interest and participation in high school football is very encouraging,” said Bob Gardner, NFHS executive director. “With the adoption of state laws and protocols for concussion management in place, we continue to believe that the sport of football at the high school level is as safe as it has been since the first rules were written in 1932 – and we believe this year’s participation report is confirmation of that belief.”
After a decline the previous year, boys participation increased about 25,000 to an all-time high of 4,544,574, while girls participation increased for the 27th consecutive year with an additional 36,591 participants and set an all-time high of 3,324,326.
Track and field registered the largest increase in participants for both boys and girls, with an additional 12,501 boys and 7,243 girls. Track and field ranks second to football in boys participants with 591,133, and remains the most popular sport for girls with 485,969 participants.
In addition to track and field, six other top 10 girls sports registered increases in 2015-16, including volleyball, soccer, softball, cross country, tennis and lacrosse. The top 10 girls sports remained the same as the previous year: track and field, volleyball, basketball, soccer, fast-pitch softball, cross country, tennis, swimming and diving, competitive spirit squads, and lacrosse.
After track and field among the top 10 boys sports, soccer registered the largest gain with an additional 7,753 participants, followed by cross country (up 6,710), basketball (up 4,949) and baseball (up 2,248). Although the top five boys sports remained the same as last year – 11-player football, track and field, basketball, baseball and soccer – cross country moved to sixth place ahead of wrestling, which dropped to seventh after a decline of 7,555 participants. Tennis, golf and swimming and diving complete the top 10 listing of boys sports.
Lacrosse continued its rise among emerging sports with 197,572 total participants to rank 10th in girls participation and 11th for boys. Among some of the non-traditional high school sports on this year’s survey, archery (8,668), badminton (17,645) and flag football (12,093) continued to register increases in participation. Also, while boys wrestling had a drop in participation, an additional 2,000 girls participated in the sport last year for an all-time high of 13,496.
Participation in adapted sports also increased in 2015-16 from 8,483 participants to 9,491 with schools in 12 states now offering these programs for students with disabilities.
The top 10 states by participants remained the same; however, Florida moved ahead of New Jersey to eighth position this year. Texas and California topped the list again with 809,075 and 802,117, respectively, followed by New York (372,772), Illinois (344,143), Ohio (319,929), Pennsylvania (319,853), Michigan (295,436), Florida (285,885), New Jersey (279,371) and Minnesota (237,686). Thirty-three of the 51 NFHS member state associations reported increases in participation in 2015-16.
The participation survey has been compiled since 1971 by the NFHS through numbers it receives from its member associations. The complete 2015-16 High School Athletics Participation Survey is attached in PDF format and will be posted soon on the NFHS website at www.nfhs.org.
Signs Exclusive Partnership with NFHS Network to Expand Digital Ticketing Nationally
ATLANTA (August 9, 2016) – Huddle and Preptix today announced a merger to create the nation’s largest and most innovative ticketing solution for the high school sports market. The combined company, Huddle, Inc., will be headquartered in Alpharetta, Georgia. Huddle offers an integrated digital and paper ticketing solution for both state association post-season events and individual school regular season events. The Huddle leadership team will remain intact, while Jay Barker and Patrick Noles from Preptix will assume senior roles at Huddle.
Additionally, the NFHS Network has selected the merged company as its exclusive partner for a national rollout of a digital ticketing platform for high school sports. Combining the NFHS Network’s media assets with a digital ticketing platform will allow it to raise overall awareness of high school sports, build its subscriber base and create custom sponsorship programs for national brands.
Digital ticketing provides consumers with a convenient way to purchase and redeem tickets online or via a mobile phone. Digital tickets have become increasingly prevalent in the travel, sports and entertainment industries but have yet to materially impact the more than 450 million tickets sold annually to high school sporting events. High school is one of the largest markets in the world that doesn’t provide a digital ticketing option for fans.
“As we grow GoFanTM, our digital ticketing platform, to augment the 150 million paper tickets we deliver annually to over 9,000 schools and 18 state associations, we’re thrilled to have Preptix join our family,” said Joey Thacker, CEO of Huddle. “The Preptix digital ticketing solution and its relationships in the high school market are a perfect complement as we bring an easy and innovative solution for high school sports fans to purchase tickets to their favorite events.”
“Patrick, the entire Preptix team and I could not be more excited about this,” said Jay Barker, founder of Preptix. “While we considered several opportunities with potential partners to expand the Preptix solution to additional states and regions, Huddle and the NFHS Network are the clear direction for the future.”
“Huddle and Preptix are the ideal combination for us as we work with our state association partners to deliver a national digital ticketing solution to the high school sports market,” said Robert Rothberg, president of the NFHS Network. “We’re committed to bringing new and groundbreaking solutions to the high school market, just like we have with our live video streaming and live data platform.”
"With the acquisition of Preptix, Huddle is strengthening its e-commerce solution, as well as bringing new talent to its rapidly expanding metro Atlanta headquarters,” said David Hartnett, senior vice president of Economic Development at the Metro Atlanta Chamber. “Further, the company's new partnership with PlayOn! Sports and the NFHS Network speaks to the strong and collaborative nature of our region's digital sports and fitness community."
Huddle, Inc. gives brands a local voice, lasting relationships, and a nationally scalable way to rise above a noisy advertising world. With partners that include StateFarmTM, CITGO®, O’Reilly Auto Parts®, Olive Garden® and Taco Bell®, Huddle has built a trusted reputation for driving local sales through innovative marketing programs. Huddle, based in Alpharetta, Georgia, builds programs that are rooted in serving a targeted audience and converting them into passionate brand advocates.
Learn more at HuddleInc.com. Stay up to date on marketing news and local solutions by following Huddle on LinkedIn and Twitter.
Preptix provides schools and associations with a digital ticketing solution that can be utilized for sporting events and other ticketed school events. Based in Birmingham, Alabama, Preptix is a pioneer of digital ticketing for high schools and serves as the exclusive digital ticketing provider for the Alabama High School Athletic Association. Learn more about Preptix at preptix.com or by following us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
The NFHS Network is a joint venture of the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS), its member state associations and PlayOn! Sports. The NFHS is located in Indianapolis, Indiana, and is the national leadership organization for high school sports and performing arts activities. PlayOn! Sports is based in Atlanta, Georgia, and is the nation’s largest high school sports media company. All NFHS Network events are available online at NFHSnetwork.com. Follow the NFHS Network on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram for the latest news and event information.
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