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A better system for grade checks?

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Another season, another sport, and another postgame forfeiture.

When Roosevelt reported a discrepancy in a player’s grade check recently, it meant sacrificing months of work because one person falsified information.

The player came in for the final three plays of an

18-0 win over Moanalua more than a week ago, and now, instead of a playoff berth, the Rough Riders are done for the season.

One suggestion from a former teacher who is now a coach: have in-house grade-check systems that key on student-athletes on the brink of academic probation. The cost? A few extra minutes for teachers who are otherwise heavily burdened already.

That would take the potential for falsified paperwork out of the hands of players who are desperate to play. Similar systems are already in place at a few schools.

A preventative measure would be preferable to the current system.

Small numbers, but big hearts

Roster numbers aren’t as large today as they were a generation ago, but that hasn’t affected effort for football teams like Kaimuki.

"That’s why we run. We get healthy. We get stronger," senior Chester Sua said after scoring four touchdowns in a 27-21 win at Waipahu.

Every detail matters more when a roster is down to 34 eligible players. An injury can be huge, as it could’ve been for the ‘Dogs when lineman T.J. Faimealelei left the game. He later returned to fortify both lines.

Kaimuki (7-1, 7-0) moved one big step closer to clinching the OIA White’s top seeding for the playoffs, which comes with home-field advantage in the first round.

"We don’t want to come back here (to Waipahu)," coach Clint Onigama said. "This stadium, this crowd is amazing. I’m losing my voice already, and the kids can’t hear us."

Seniors like Sua are keeping perspective about the win.

"It’s really important. We have to be humble and keep on working hard," said Sua, who returned a kickoff 88 yards for one of his scores. "Without my team, I couldn’t do that. It was all teamwork."

 

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