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10/02/23- Board of Control Referendum to the Membership – Bylaw 9

October 3, 2023 Athletic Department Blog Updates


Proposed by the KHSAA Board of Control. Ballot Deadline – October 16, 2023.

Amend Bylaw 9, Basketball/Football Contestant On Other Teams, Postseason And All-Star Games, to remove restrictions on organized play in basketball during the school year and prior to the first legal date for practice.

The complete text of the proposed amendment including the rationale and procedures (PDF), is on the KHSAA website at

The complete description of the proposed amendment including the rationale and procedures, is on the KHSAA website at

To complete your vote, go to You must be a Principal or Designated Representative per Bylaw 1 to vote.

At its September meeting, the Board of Control gave final approval to the distribution of a referendum of the membership for the purpose of amending Bylaw 9. At the September annual meeting of the membership, there was a discussion of this proposal which was not submitted by any member school or reviewed by the Board prior to the May 1 Constitutional deadline. Following that feedback as well as significant discussion at the regional membership meetings, the determination was made to submit this issue to the schools by referendum.

The use of a referendum is generally restricted to three situations: 1) an immediate need to address health and safety, 2) an urgent need to decide an issue germane to a past, current or pending legislative session, or 3) an issue that has received significant membership input but is not scheduled for a vote at the annual membership meeting. This proposal meets this third criterion.

At its core, this proposal would remove restrictions on basketball players being involved in any form of outside competition, regardless of grade level and past play, beginning with the first date of school and continuing through the day before the first official date of practice (October 15). The in-season restrictions for both basketball and football participants and their involvement in outside competition would remain in place if this proposal were to pass.

Rationale: For the last several years, there have been adjustments and amendments by the membership to Bylaw 9, which restricts only football and basketball players and no other team sport athletes during specific times of the academic school year. Many of these adjustments have been due to the continual fluctuation of collegiate recruiting rules. In addition, the pre-season restrictions (as a practical matter) impact only basketball players due to the timing of the start of football practice.

Originally, Bylaw 9 was crafted as a joint effort with parks and recreation officials in an effort to preserve community participation spots in sports where the high school athletes were eliminating those opportunities for the general public. Since that time, with the advent and growth of non-school basketball, member schools have also supported the rule to protect against outside influences. In addition, this rule reduced while not eliminating, the conflicts within schools where athletes might be forced to choose between an in-season fall sport (i.e. football or soccer) and attendance at these types of events, not to mention injury risks associated with such participation.

Various pros and cons to this change have been discussed for the last several weeks, months and years with the membership representatives identifying several items that are problematic to the current rule including:

  • While the current rule may potentially help guard against injury, this concern is not applicable or prioritized by the membership in any other sport;
  • The landscape of collegiate recruiting is constantly changing, and in fact, recent changes to the NCAA rules further highlight the need for less restrictions to choices for students and their families as they compete for fewer than ever opportunities beyond college;
  • While there has been a desire to somewhat “protect” students from outside influences that may be present in non-scholastic competition, this “protection” does not apply to other sports and in fact, places legitimate event promoters in a disadvantageous position;
  • The enforceability of the current rule is likely not consistent as it is felt that many more students participate in these activities, in violation of the current rules, without the impacted member school being made aware of such participation in time to prevent issues;
  • Concerns with the likely (or unlikely) support of the rule if a court case were to arise given its different treatment of sports;
  • The NCAA calendar is adjusted annually, and as such, the current rule could make school planning (and family / athlete planning) extremely difficult for those with an interest in recruiting events;
  • The NCAA recruiting rules are almost constantly adjusted in addition to the dates, further creating confusion around the regulations tied to the preseason period in Bylaw 9.

If this proposal fails, the restrictions in place for the late summer/early fall of 2023 will remain in place. Based on the draft NCAA calendar at this time (if such calendar is given final approval by the NCAA):

  • For 2024-2025, Boys’ recruiting activities could not be attended by member school basketball players who had both been enrolled in grade nine and played for a team representing that school from August 6 to September 8.
  • For 2024-2025, Girls’ recruiting activities could not be attended by member school basketball players who had both been enrolled in grade nine and played for a team representing that school from August 1 to August 31. In addition, at press time, restrictions are currently being proposed within the NCAA for more restricted dates in the month of September which would limit many activities to seniors only.

Ballots on this issue are due back to the KHSAA using the election system prior to October 16, 2023.


To vote, schools representatives must login to the member schools only page.

If you have MULTIPLE ROLES (coach, AD, etc.) you must be logged is as either the Principal or Designated Representative as only those individuals are eligible to vote.

If you are the Principal or Designated Representative but don’t see the elections option, you should be able to click “change login role” at the top and select Designated Representative.

The system will ensure each school receives only one vote. In the left-hand column of options on the member school page (, then select “Cast a Ballot in Board of Control Elections”.

If you are properly logged in, you will see this election.

The deadline for the submission of the ballot is October 16, 2023. Thank you in advance for your participation. 


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