Wed | Nov 14, 2018

Judging schoolboy football supremacy

Published:Saturday | December 9, 2017 | 12:00 AM


Orville Higgins, esteemed sports journalist on December 8, 2017, asked a very appropriate and rational question regarding supremacy in Jamaican schoolboy football, 'Are Olivier Shield champs really the best?'

Mr Higgins also concluded that at the end of the playing of the Oliver Shield 2017 game, he would not be convinced that the match will necessarily determine 'the symbol of schoolboy football supremacy'.

Mr Higgins' supposition appears to logically question the claim that the FLOW Super Cup is a true representation of supremacy.

Based on the evidence Mr Higgins presented, it is challenging to reason against his conclusion, as the results of the 2017 schoolboy competitions and prior years speak for themselves.

Why is this a vexing question for schoolboy football? I suppose it has something to do with how society is wired and the reality that in the performance of just about anything, one needs to perform some type of analysis. For example, we as humans appear to possess the 'need' to quantify and rank things in order of good, better, best or in this instance, supremacy.

We do this frequently; I offer, we document and keep scores in games such as football, cricket, table tennis, squash etc., and even horse racing, testing our children's and adults' intelligence and even motor dexterity to determine some order of ranking for various sovereign interest utilitarian purpose.

We even create a pecking order for our children's future by placing them in schools based on some type of quantifiable performance data, ISSA uses quantification to determine eligibility to participate in the annual schoolboy football competitions. Punters rely on performance data to determine odds for risking their hard-earned dollars. Sponsors use data to determine rate on return of investment and associated risk. Scoring performance data, ranking and supremacy is a big deal to humans.

Therefore, it's reasonable to ask, how do we determine supremacy in schoolboy football without a performance ranking system and concurrently rationalise that we can determine the champions of all champions of schoolboy football through an arbitrary luck-of-the-draw method of competitiveness?