by Michael Bascombe
ST GEORGE’S, December 19, 2016 – There are increasing calls for the T.A. Marryshow Community College (TAMCC) to be integrated into the schools’ sporting calendar, especially track and field.
Coaches Denise Williams and Kwame Hypolite want to see the inclusion of tertiary institutions like TAMCC particularly in the annual Inter-Secondary Schools’ Athletic Championships (Intercol) on the basis that there are not many tertiary institutions in Grenada and that many of the students represent Grenada at the CARIFTA Games and the Windward Islands Schools’ Games.
Both coaches sit on the executive of the Grenada Athletic Association (GAA) but spoke as members of St David Track Blazers since the GAA has not taken a position on the matter.
“What I would like to see in 2017 is that TAMCC participates in Intercol 2017. That would be my wish,” Williams told GrenadaSports.
“I think there are a lot of athletes out there who have left High School (Secondary School) and they’re at TAMCC and that is where their career ends. I think that if they’re back in Intercol it will do very well for track and field for Grenada and these athletes,” she said.
“We have seen so much talent out there and when they get to TAMCC, that’s it. Some of them participate in National Championships and the mini meets but I do think that a big meet like Intercol where you have almost the whole nation coming out, where there are scouts and coaches looking on, these athletes are missing out on these opportunities.”
Williams, who coached the St David’s Catholic Secondary School (SDCSS) to 13 Intercol titles, opined that some of the athletes already represent Grenada at the CARIFTA Games and the Windward Islands Schools’ Games and therefore should be given the opportunity to compete among their age groups.
“They participate in the Windward Islands Schools’ Games so I think they could participate in the Under-18 and also the Under-21. Those who are training really want to participate in the Intercol and probably I am echoing some of their sentiments also and they will like to be part of Intercol and showcase their talent in front of the biggest track and field meet in Grenada,” she said.
While supporting their inclusion, Hypolite also wants TAMCC to develop its athlete programme so that there could be full integration into the athletics family.
“I think the TAMCC should be included on the programme for schools. I would even go further to say that should TAMCC be allowed, a number of the other institutions should be given that opportunity because they too may have other persons at that particular age group, for example NEWLO (New Life Organisation),” said Hypolite.
“I would hasten to say also that what we need to see is TAMCC and other institutions being integrated into the athletic programme where they too can have their athletic programme, one that could stand on its own and which includes an active athletic programme for the athletes,” he said.
Former national shot put champion Kerlon Peters also supports TAMCC’s participation in the largest track and field competition in Grenada but with some conditions.
“I support it also. They must be full time students and can only compete for two years and the same registration as all athletes in other schools,” said Peters, a former CARIFTA Games Javelin medallist.
Peters believes that now is the time to involve the TAMCC since from 2017 Intercol will be a three-day programme and with the various age categories.
Also, supporting TAMCC’s integration into the schools’ sporting landscape is United States-based Grenadian sports promoter Mike McQuilkin.
“I am 100% for them competing, and I had advocated about it before,” said McQuilkin.
“All they need to do, is to register all those of high school age under TAMCC Tech High School, even though they are taking college credits and sitting in class there. Doing so, will protect them from college coaches reporting to the NCAA that they should not be receiving four years in any division one or two programmes here (US), because they had already done two in Grenada,” he said.
“There is no law stating that you can’t take college credits while attending high school.”
The Intercol Championships will be held over three days, April 3-5, 2017 at the National Stadium.
The organisers of the Grenada Invitational 2017 have agreed to allow some of the standouts from the Intercol Championships to compete at the meet scheduled for April 8 at the National Stadium.