Leading off today:
Indulge me for a moment since this story doesn't technically qualify as the type of high school sports story that typically finds a place in blogs here.
But it's too good a story by too good a columnist, so I'm going to go with it. Besides, this is our second blog of the day.
Sean Kirst of The Buffalo News told the story Tuesday of an absolutely magic moment at Sweet Home High School, where a teacher stepped in to pinch-hit for a special-needs student during an assembly to build teacher-student bonds. The assignment was straight-forward, literally and figuratively: If Steve Becker nailed a half-court basketball shot in the gymnasium, Arianna Ruhland would win a television that her family very much needed.
You don't need to be a genius to figure out how the story ends, but you'd cheat yourself out of a wonderful story from Kirst if you didn't read the full account.
Lots of money, little documentations: Today's early blog led off with the story from The Journal News shedding new light on the controversy surrounding last season's move of the Section 1 basketball tournament out of the Westchester County Center.
As noted there, the story was part of an impressive package of stories about Section 1, the Lower Hudson Valley component of the New York State Public High School Athletic Association.
If the basketball story was good because of its in-depth examination of bickering surrounding the decision to move the finals to Pace University, then the story on the relationship between Section 1 and Southern Westchester BOCES was eye-opening because it shed light on the lack of documentation spelling out roles and responsibilities.
The two organizations are keeping a sports operation with an annual budget of around $6 million up and running -- and everyone in the upper echelon seems to have a feel for who needs to do what -- but there's an amazing lack of documentation and institutional knowledge. Ask two people something so fundamental as how long Section 1 has been operating as a unit of BOCES and you might get three different answers.