Okay, I guess if a kid is really good at something and his school doesn't offer it at all, it is reasonable to want to attend a school where it is offered . . . BUT . . . I think that most parents who move their kids around do it because they see winning as an end in itself and put sports ahead of academics, not because they want to beef up the kid's college application.
Atrophy: what you get when you win atournament.
I think people transfering for athletic reasons are taking advantage of "the system" and are ultimately weakening the sport.
If a "superstar" freshman leaves his hometown school to wrestle for one of the very few elite teams in his area, his local program suffers and the entire sport suffers.
That's been the difference between eastern PA and western PA in recent years. The talent in the east (where transfers are common) has been pooled to a few elite teams like Easton and North Hampton. In the west, the talent is spread out.
The east usually wins the team dual title, while the west usually has more champs and place winners.
The big stink last year in the west was when a "club" team inserted one of their coaches in a private school and got several club members to leave their local schools and attend the same private school. This virtually turned their club team into a all-star high school team.
To further complicate things, the private school got tired of the controvery and dropped their wrestling program. Now this group of all-star wrestlers were enrolled in a school with no wrestle team. So, they were all allowed to join the nearest public school team.
To clarify, wrestlers were living in and paying taxes to public school district "A", attending classes at private school "B" and wrestling with fellow club wrestlers from various areas at public school "C".
It's funny to me that private schools have barely been mentioned in this thread. As an alum and employee of Catholic schools, it seems like we get all the flack in Illinois for transferring, though kids who make public to private transfers have to sit a year. The Illinois High School Association is pretty silent on private-private transfers. Schools pillage each other's teams all the time, but if the kid is happier at the other school, and it's a better fit, who am I to complain. Jerome Ward spent his freshman year at the high school I coach at, and then transferred to St. Rita. At Rita, he won state titles in wrestling and football, got a good education, and was happy. There is no one at Gordon Tech (the school I work for) who holds that against Jerome, and we were just as happy to learn that he was wrestling in college. (Kind of a digression, sorry.) Yes, Illinois does have some problems with transfers, and one school in the south suburbs has really gotten bad about going after other school's wrestlers, but, if it works out better for the kid, then c'est la vie.
High school wrestling is not covered very well in the newspapers, so you may have trouble find all the details. Plus, this whole thing played out over a few years.
Here's some details.
The club in question was Rob Waller's All-American Wrestling club. Waller was and accomplished wrestler in his day and his son was an NCAA champ at Oklahoma. Waller was also a successful high school coach and phys ed teacher until he allegedly roughed up one too many students and was fired as a teacher and a coach. (BTW - with the strength of PA teacher's unions, it's very dificult to get yourself fired). Anyway, to make ends meet, he built a wrestling room on his property and started chargeing kids to come over and be tutored by him, his son and other big name talents that he has contacts with. I believe Dan Gable even made an appearence or two.
Trouble started when one of the club coaches took the head wrestling coach job at Greensburg Central Catholic. Several of the club kids enrolled at GCC and other schools started crying foul. GCC was being investigated and decided to just drop the program.
Now since GCC didn't offer wrestling , they had a loop hole that allowed them to co-op with a neighboring school. Some of the neighboring schools refused to take them, but Hempfield Area High School took them in and also took the WPIAL team title last year.
here as an article from last year http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/06334/742389-364.stm
So if your a very accomplished wrestler and "your" school has a poor program, no coaching, work-out partners and such. You should just settle for that school/program and suffer for those years? No way. Move on to a place that you can grow. I'm with Schlott, if your looking to continue your education, you're going to have a much better chance of earning a scolly by attending a better program.
I guess it depends on which perspective you take.
If you look at it from a parent's poin-of-view, you do what's best for your child. Period.
If you look at it as a stewart of the sport or someone who cares about the long-term health of the sport, you do what's best for everyone.
Determining things like "no coaching" and "no good work-out partners" is a very slippery slope to go down.
I love to bring up Carlton Haselrig when people say their school as a poor program. His high school didn't even have a team. He and his Dad worked out and he had very little competition until the state tournament at the end of the year. Of course he went on to win multiple NCAA titles.