High School Football Coach Suspended For Putting 61 Points On The Board

Reuters/Mike Blake

Greg Price Contributor
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The head coach of a Long Island varsity football team was suspended after they routed another team in a 61-13 win last Friday.

First reported by Newsday, Plainedge High School Red Devils head varsity football coach Rob Shraver was penalized for the win against South Side High School under an unusual Nassau County policy designed to prevent lopsided results in high school football games. If a team wins a game by more than 42 points, the winning coach must explain to a special committee why such an outsized margin could not be avoided. (RELATED: Conshohocken Golden Bears Youth Football Team Fined For Winning 36-0)

The committee found Shraver’s explanation inadequate and determined that he should have pulled his starters when his team had extended their lead at the start of the fourth quarter. He became the first varsity coach to be punished under the 3-year-old policy and was suspended for Plainedge’s final regular season game Saturday against the Lynbrook Owls.

Mr. Shaver told Newsday that he had not intentionally run up the score and did not agree with the committee’s interpretation of the rule.

“They thought it was a mismanaged game, which my opinion is, that isn’t the rule,” he said. “The spirit of the rule is to prevent better teams from running up on lesser programs and sportsmanship and dignity and all that stuff. I get it. That didn’t happen.”

The Plainedge superintendent, Edward A. Salina Jr., came to Shraver’s defense saying in an online letter that he had been “done wrong” and called the committee a “kangaroo court.”

“What are you teaching children by saying play fairly but now you are playing too well, don’t play anymore for the rest of the game. Where’s the life lessons?” Salina wrote about the committee in the letter.