128 Tulsa Public Schools Football Players On Academic Suspension

Friday, September 27th 2013, 6:04 pm
By: Emory Bryan

A total of 128 Tulsa Public Schools football players won't play on Friday night because they're on academic suspension.

The district is now deep enough into the school year to start suspending players who aren't making good grades.

At Hale High School, there are 29 of 49 players can't play Friday, and the suspensions go beyond football and into other extra-curricular activities.

At Booker T., 18 members of the band can't perform; at East Central, it's 17 members of the cross country team.

It's not enough to force a team to forfeit, but at Hale High School, 29 of the Rangers' 49 players can't play.

The coaches get a list every Monday of who can't play the next week.

"If you're planning and practicing and the game plan is centered around one guy and he's not eligible, you've got to change the game plan," TPS Athletic Director Gil Cloud said.

Cloud said the rule is this: If children are failing, they're on the sidelines.

"If a student athlete has failing grade in a class, that's a week of probation," he said. "They have a week to make it up. After that week, if they're failing that class or any other class, they're ineligible until they're passing all classes again."

Booker T. is the only school that doesn't have a probation period; instead, an "F" puts a player out of the game right away.

All of the high schools have students on academic suspension, but Hale has the most, 74 students in all, most of them football players.

East Central and Memorial are second and third on the list of nine high schools.

At Edison, four cheerleaders will have to sit out the game this week because of academic suspension.

The Memorial football team has 22 players who will stay on the bench out of 60 on the roster.

At Webster, the good news is that all of the cheerleaders are passing.

But 16 of Webster's football players will be sidelined because they're failing at least one class.

For the players who have good grades but normally sit on the bench that means for now....

"Everybody gets to play. Everybody gets to play," Cloud said.

That list is just the academic suspensions.

List of academic suspensions by school/sport

There are others on suspension for discipline reasons, but TPS says not many student athletes are on that list.