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Lack Of Recognition For Fall Sports And Closing Of Weight Room Shows True Colors

This is what happens when the pettiness, small minds and big egos of adults collide at the school level – the kids are the ones who always end up paying the price.

Ironic, isn’t it? The same adults we vote onto school boards and entrust with, among other things, the very simple mantra of ‘doing the right thing’ by our children, are the same adults who show by their inaction that they have little to no regard for those very same children.

So, shame on the Carmel Central School District Board of Education. Shame.

While they sit back and try to figure out among themselves who is siding with whom, and how they can parlay their alliances into forcing out head football coach Todd Cayea – kind of a primitive, selfish game of ‘Survivor’ – the players are being penalized.

And not just football players.

As has been well-documented, Cayea and former Carmel boys basketball coach Paul Brennan got into a heated verbal argument two months ago at the school gym. It was between two adults, both of whom got loud, neither of whom got physical, and now some members of the hierarchy have seized on the opportunity to try to force Cayea out after 25 years.

READ MORE: Rich Thomaselli Commentary: Is Carmel Trying To Push Football Coach Todd Cayea Out?

Tuesday night’s board meeting produced … nothing. Dozens and dozens of parents were in attendance, along with dozens and dozens of players. Only seven people were ultimately able to speak during the public comment period. The board listened but offered no response, nor any vote in a public setting, regarding Cayea.

Sure is nice to hide behind that ‘ol “It’s a personnel issue” excuse, isn’t it? <end sarcasm>

But here are two things that are obvious.

Rich Thomaselli Commentary

One – For the second straight BOE meeting, this allegedly august body pulled from the agenda a recognition of the school’s fall sports and athletes.

How petty can you be to penalize these hard-working boys and girls?

Don’t answer. We already know the answer, even if BOE members won’t say it.

Because to recognize the fall sports, including boys and girls soccer, and girls tennis, and cross country, and field hockey and cheerleading, means also recognizing the sport that made the most impact in the fall.

Football, and the team that had one of the greatest seasons in Carmel history by reaching the Section 1, Class AA championship game.

Football, and the nearly dozen players who earned postseason individual honors.

Football, and the man who was named the Section 1 Coach of the Year.

Two – The weight room was still closed as of Wednesday for football players and offseason workouts, as Cayea – clearly as a punishment – was stripped of his stipend jobs of supervising weight room workouts and keeping official score at basketball games.

This one goes beyond pettiness, however.

Now school officials and the BOE are screwing with not only the boys’ preparation for the next season but with their health and well-being. Please, go ahead, ask me. I’ll be happy to tell you all about how a late start in the weight room and a SIX-MONTH WAIT to hire a football coach cost the Ketcham football team back in 2014, a team that admittedly was not fully prepared and suffered a number of injuries late in the season due to a lack of conditioning.

So, Carmel officials and BOE, while you bathe in your smugness and drag this out, the students you’re supposed to be caretakers for wallow in uncertainty.

Maybe they should add another ‘C’ to Carmel’s famous Six C’s mission statement.

C – Conduct yourselves a manner befitting the job that you hold.


  1. Julie

    January 23, 2020 at 8:23 pm

    Such bullshit what a disgrace!

  2. mike

    January 24, 2020 at 3:45 pm

    Seems like the punishment is excessive for someone with 25 years of service.

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