Basketball players not accepted to join the team

By Patrick Avognon
Opinion Editor 

Photo by Marco Perez. In a photo from the spring 2012 season, former DPMHS student Anthony Rowe played on the BCCHS Patriots’ basketball team.

Ever since Daniel Pearl Magnet High School (DPMHS) left Birmingham Community Charter High School’s (BCCHS) campus, a five-year agreement was created to allow the magnet school players to play on their teams.

BCCHS can’t officially stop players from playing on their teams, according to the agreement. But some DPMHS student athletes feel that the coaches use other methods to exclude them from athletic activities. Instead of not allowing them to play, they simply cut them from the team from the start.

“I believe I got cut because of political reasons on the Birmingham campus,” senior Jonathan Diaz said.

Diaz has been playing basketball since middle school so he regretted not trying out for the team earlier. He decided during the summer that basketball would be both recreational and his ticket to a good university.

But that dream was shattered the day he tried out.

“I wanted to do basketball for both fun and scholarship but the coach told me there were too many players,” Diaz said.

This was the response that the majority of the players who were cut received.

Senior Anthony Rowe, who formerly attended DPMHS, left the school earlier this semester due to losing his spot on the BCCHS team.

Outside of school, Rowe invests over 90% of his spare time in his basketball skills so, of course, he was upset with the coach’s decision with no success.

“He said that he was going to build the program and cut some seniors. I happened to be one of them, but that’s a bogus reason,” said Rowe, who played on the BCCHS team last year and now plays on the Reseda High team.

To many students, joining the basketball team it is more than just a game. It is an opportunity to possibly get further in their education and land a spot playing sports in some of the nation’s top universities.

Over the last few years, the winning of scholarships has come higher in priority to the winning of championships.

“I wasn’t counting on a scholarship but it’s a goal of mine and I want to hit that goal. And so I left (Daniel Pearl) to go after my goal,” Rowe said.

Head Basketball Coach Nick Hauselman said the cuts were due to having too many great players on the team.

“Nobody likes to get cut but we just didn’t have the space. There were players that came out this season that were overall just better than the ones that got cut,” Hauselman said.

The only DPMHS student that remains on the basketball team is junior Gary Balyezyan.

“I miss my teammates but I think we have a pretty good squad this year,” Balyezyan said.

Athletic Director Rick Prizant was unavailable for interviews on multiple occasions and failed to respond to any emails regarding the cuts of DPMHS students from the BCCHS team.