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High school notebook: OSSAA looking at contract extension with State Fairgrounds

by Scott Wright and Jacob Unruh Published: April 14, 2014

The Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association Board of Directors will vote on a five-year contract extension with Oklahoma State Fair Park to host the state tournaments for wrestling and basketball at Wednesday’s monthly meeting.

And it could come at a cost.

The OSSAA said Monday that the agreement will cost more money, though the total increase likely won’t be finalized until Tuesday.

This year marked the final year of the previous contract, which required the OSSAA to pay the fairgrounds 12 percent of the profits from the gate admission and $1,500 each weekend State Fair Arena was used.

The OSSAA uses the arena three weekends — one for wrestling and two for basketball — totaling $4,500.

“It’s time for discussion about the arena,” OSSAA executive director Ed Sheakley said. “Next year will be our 50th year there, I believe. It’s got a lot of history to it.”

The arena, though, was under fire in March during the basketball tournaments.

There was a leak in the roof that dripped onto the court, while there were also multiple power outages in the small-school basketball tournament. That was not an issue the final weekend of the season, though there were complaints about the arena floor by teams.

Sheakley announced at last month’s meeting that arena officials will make sure the floor is refinished before next season’s tournaments.


Shawnee senior guard/forward McKenzie Cooper isn’t sure how her older sister Taylor is able to live so far from home in College Station, Texas, while playing at Texas A&M.

Cooper, though, won’t have to worry about distance from her family during college. She will sign with Oklahoma Baptist University on Wednesday.

“I just weighed it out and I took other visits,” Cooper said. “It just felt right. It was a factor staying close to my parents. I have to live in the dorms, but my parents said they are changing the locks.”

Cooper was on The Oklahoman’s Big All-City first team this season after averaging 15.7 points per game last season and leading Shawnee to the Class 5A semifinals. She suffered a torn ACL in the state tournament her junior season, but returned at full strength in time for last season.

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by Scott Wright
A lifelong resident of the Oklahoma City metro area, Scott Wright has been on The Oklahoman staff since 2005, covering a little bit of everything on the state's sports scene. He has been a beat writer for football and basketball at Oklahoma and...
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by Jacob Unruh
Jacob Unruh is a graduate of Northeastern State University. He was born in Cherokee and raised near Vera where he attended Caney Valley High School.During his tenure at NSU, Unruh wrote for The Northeastern (NSU's student newspaper), the...
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