Imagine what it would be like if Rio Americano’s sports teams did not have any league games against El Camino, Mira Loma, or Cordova?
The Sacramento-San Joaquin Section proposal to realign the athletic leagues and conferences in the greater Sacramento area would do just that. If passed, Rio would switch from the Capital Athletic Conference to the Capital Valley Conference, a league without many traditional rivals. The realignment, which is done every four years, would start at the beginning of the 2014-15 school year and last until 2018.
The CVC would be a D-II conference made up by Antelope, Bella Vista, Del Campo, Ponderosa, Rio, and Whitney.
Jesuit will be in the Delta League along with most football powers in Sacramento County. El Camino will be in a new-look Capital Athletic League; they will be the only CAL school that will not be changing conferences.
This move has created some discontentment on Rio’s campus, including from athletic director Karen Hanks.
“It will be a bummer [to not play rivals in league]. The teams will still be able to play in preseason, but it is a different dynamic. League games actually matter,” Hanks said.
She does not support the changes, but she does realize that they are standard for the San Joaquin Section to perform such alignments.
“Every four years they go through realignments,” she said. “It accommodates for new schools. The section takes into account population, what sports schools play, competition and locale.”
The idea of locale is disappointing to athletes as well. In the CAL, it was a total distance from Rio to the rest of its competitor schools was just over 54 miles. In the CVC, the distance will rise to nearly 87 total miles.
The athletes feel it is a problem that there will not be their close rival in the league. Many students have already voiced their opinions on the topic.
Even freshmen, in their short time at Rio, have gotten their taste of the El Camino rivalry. After all, only current underclassmen and classes to come will be affected by the league changes.
‘I want to play El Camino in league,” said freshman girls basketball player Linnea Bartley. “Besides, the league we are going to is worse for us than the one we are in now.”
Even though they are not affected by the realignment proposal, the upperclassmen are just as angered by it.
“I don’t like the changes because of El Camino,” said junior basketball player Kadyn Silva. “[The rivalry] is a huge part of our school.”