La. HS stripped of title for recruiting Katrina evacuees

Updated: August 29, 2006, 9:08 PM ET
Associated Press

BASTROP, La. -- Bastrop High School will have to forfeit its football championship under a Louisiana High School Athletic Association ruling that it illegally recruited players and violated the residency transfer rule last year, the Morehouse Parish School Board president said.

On the Dan Patrick Show
Brad Bradshaw, Bastrop HS Football Coach, talks about the alleged illegal contact between coaches and players in shelters. Bradshaw said that football was a positive for the kids and the memories of last season can never be erased.

To listen to the podcast, click hereInsider

Nick White, Asst. Sports Director, ESPN 99.3 (Ruston, La.) discusses Bastrop High School's title being revoked on the Dan Patrick Show. White contends Louisiana wasn't prepared for the disaster and there was little organization in its aftermath, while Dan thinks the coaches, not the kids, should be penalized.

To listen to the podcast, click here. Insider

Board president Kris McKoin confirmed Monday night that the LHSAA had ruled against Bastrop High. All of the players involved were hurricane evacuee transfers from Port Sulphur High, and all will be ineligible this coming season, McKoin said.

"Our community accepted not only these kids but hundreds of evacuees from all over the state that came from dire situations. These kids did not come from homes or schools, but shelters."

The Class 4A state football championship last year was Bastrop High School's first since 1927.

Coach Brad Bradshaw said earlier Monday that he had been told the school was receiving bad news from the LHSAA, but his only focus at this time was on his players and how the decision might affect them. He added that he expected the school to appeal the decision.

"My kids are crushed right now," Bradshaw said. "They are crying. They are hurt that their hard work is being taken away from them. They know what we did last year. They know what we accomplished."

Principal Tom Thrower said he wouldn't comment until he got the written ruling.

LHSAA commissioner Tommy Henry said Monday that he had issued a preliminary ruling, which he expected to arrive Wednesday at Morehouse Parish and the school that filed the complaint.

Both Bastrop and the complaining school will have 48 hours to file an appeal once they receive the ruling. Henry said he wouldn't comment on the investigation until after an appeal had been made or the appeal deadline had passed.

Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press