Board votes unanimously to sanction both sports and will discuss esports; lacrosse board upgrades
COLUMBUS, Ohio — In a historic move Thursday, the Ohio High School Athletic Association’s board of directors voted unanimously to add women’s wrestling and men’s volleyball as emerging sports starting in the school year. 2022-23. Additionally, the board voted to move girls’ and boys’ lacrosse from the emerging sports category to the list of OHSAA-recognized sports, and also committed to discussing a partnership with a group to host a tournament. in electronic sports (games).
The Ohio High School Wrestling Coaches Association has held a girls’ wrestling tournament since 2020, and the Ohio High School Boys Volleyball Association has held its tournament since 1988.
“OHSAA has been talking to leaders in men’s volleyball and women’s wrestling for several years and we are now in a position to bring these two sports into OHSAA,” said OHSAA CEO Doug Ute. “This decision will help these sports continue to grow and allow these student-athletes to compete for an OHSAA state championship. This gives more opportunities to children and this is the mission of OHSAA.
As emerging sports, women’s wrestling and men’s volleyball will be administered like the 26 sports currently recognized by OHSAA, but will have additional requirements under OHSAA’s General Sports Rules 16 that could lead to sanction complete in the future.
“We will look to keep a very similar format for women’s wrestling and men’s volleyball tournaments like what the coaching associations have done,” Ute said. “The Girls’ State Wrestling Tournament takes place in mid-February and the Boys’ State Volleyball Tournament takes place in the spring. We haven’t developed rules for the tournaments yet, but we will start working on them so that these two sports come into effect next fall for the 2022-23 school year.
OHSAA added lacrosse in 2016 and the sport has continued to grow and is now graduating from the emerging sports category, effective immediately.
With the addition of women’s wrestling and men’s volleyball, the number of OHSAA sports increases to 28, with 14 for girls and 14 for boys.
OHSAA has been in conversation with Esports as it has seen rapid growth at the high school and college level over the past few years. OHSAA will seek to partner with an esports-focused group, similar to how OHSAA partnered with Varsity Spirit for its high school cheerleading competition first held last December. .
Editor’s note: Ohio becomes the 33rd state association to add a girl’s wrestling program in any official manner, such as official sanction or emerging sport status, etc.
State associations with wrestling girls in alphabetical order (33)
Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Dakota North, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Washington, Wisconsin