To: California Interscholastic Federation
California cheer teams petition CIF's Sunday no play rule
The California cheer teams would like to petition CIF (California Interscholastic Federation) to provide a yearly waiver that allows teams to compete in the Sunday Finals of the National High School Cheerleading Championships (NHSCC). Of the 51 states there are 35 states represented at the NHSCC; therefore it gives traditional competitive cheer the closest thing to a ranking system that is similar to Max Preps for other sports.
Why is this important?
In 2017 the State of California adopted Assembly Bill 949 making competitive cheerleading a sport, as a result, cheerleaders across the state are now governed by California Interscholastic Federation (CIF). Athletes, coaches and parents are enthusiastic about the benefits that CIF can provide the sport of Traditional Competitive Cheer; however, there is one CIF bylaw that has a negative impact on many of the most elite cheer athletes. CIF's no Sunday play rule means that California cheer teams cannot compete in the Sunday Finals at the National High School Cheerleading Championships (NHSCC) in Orlando, Florida. The NHSCC is one of the few cheerleading competitions sponsored by the governing body of high school sports the National Federation of High Schools (NFHS) and is featured on ESPN. The no Sunday play rule prohibits the most elite high school cheerleading athletes from competing at the highest level of competition for their sport which directly impacts their potential college participation in this sport. Colleges have representatives present at the NHSCC at a recruitment combine which allows athletes to create contacts for potential scholarship opportunities. Athletes, coaches, and parents support the no Sunday play rule for all other contests; however, for teams who make it to the Finals for the NHSCC, their athletes gain national exposure to college coaches and recruiters. All other sports are given “National Rankings” through MaxPreps without actually having to compete in any national level games or competitions. Of the 51 states there are approximately 30 states represented at the NHSCC; therefore, it gives traditional competitive cheer the closest thing to a ranking system that is similar to Max Preps. In addition, the only high school championship that offers a world ranking is the NHSCC, where approximately 6 countries are represented; this World competition is on Sunday. In the last 5 years, multiple California teams who have made it to Sunday Finals, have received televised national exposure on ESPN creating positive publicity for the high schools they represent. It is for this reason that teams are asking for the waiver for just the NHSCC. California cheer teams would like to continue to represent their high school at the National Level by competing in the Sunday finals at the National High School Cheerleading Championships.