Reseda to Protest Proposed Switch to 4-A League

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Reseda High will protest a recommendation by the City Section's realignment committee that would force the Regents to switch conferences with Canoga Park for the two-year releaguing cycle beginning next fall.

The 12-member realignment committee recommended the change after dismissing an appeal by Reseda on Monday night. The committee also recommended a switch involving Westchester of the Coastal Conference and Narbonne of the Southern Pacific Conference. The recommendations will be forwarded to the Interscholastic Athletics Committee, which will meet Monday. Westchester also plans to protest.

Reseda would be moved from the Valley Pac-8 Conference, a 3-A Division conference in most sports, to the Northwest Valley Conference, primarily a 4-A conference. Joel Schaeffer, the school's football coach, angrily objected to the proposed move, vowing to take his fight as high as the school board.

"We're not going to sit by and let this happen," he said. "I don't know why we have to be pinpointed to be the sacrificial lamb."

Schaeffer argued that either Grant or Birmingham of the Valley Pac-8 Conference would be better suited for the move, citing enrollment and overall strength of athletics programs. Reseda, with 2,202 students, has a smaller student population than Grant (3,199) and Birmingham (3,169). All are four-year schools.

But City Section Commissioner Hal Harkness said that strength of program is the only criterion used for realignment. Enrollment differences are insignificant, he said.

"The decision was based on an assessment of the overall programs," he said. "Why does anyone move up? Because they are successful. It's just Reseda's time to move up."

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