Postseason ban lifted for one Memphis high school basketball team

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — After principals of three Memphis high schools went to the state athletic association to appeal their schools' postseason bans, one of those schools had that ban lifted. It remains in place for the other two.

Fights at the two schools at Jan. 25 basketball games involved about 400 people total, and TSSAA placed the bans on all four schools involved shortly after that.

Wooddale High School was taken off restrictive probation, meaning their boys' basketball team is allowed to compete in the playoffs.

But the Wooddale basketball team is not in the clear, as they are on a regular probation for the next two seasons. The regular probation comes with a lower fine ($500 annually) than restrictive probation ($1,000 annually).

In a letter to Wooddale principal Otis Clayton, TSSAA executive director Bernard Childress released the following statement:

"Both you and the Melrose principal have reaffirmed that all of the spectators who left the stands and came onto the floor were associated with Melrose and none with Wooddale. Accordingly, I have decided not to impose restrictive probation on the Wooddale boys' basketball program."

Childress also said the board is unable to confirm the identities of everyone in the video, so there is a chance Wooddale spectators were still involved. Because of this, and along with the possible breach of student safety, the regular probation is still placed on the school.

TSSAA left their original decisions against Melrose and Westwood high schools unchanged, and their boys' basketball teams will still be on restrictive probation and banned from competing in the postseason.

Fairley High School was the other team involved. Their principal did not make the trip to appeal to TSSAA, but they are still excepted to appeal the decision.

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