High schools switching game times to avoid Fiesta Bowl conflict

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - High schools are switching their game times to make sure fans don't have to choose between basketball and watching Ohio State play on television for the national football championship.

Schools throughout Ohio are either postponing their games from the night of Jan. 3 or playing the games earlier in the day. The Fiesta Bowl, which pits Miami and the Buckeyes, is to begin at 8 p.m.

"This might be a once in a lifetime thing," said George Shreyer, athletic director of Fairfield Union in southeast Ohio. "You don't know how often Ohio State is going to be playing in the national title game, so this is a big deal."

Fairfield Union is moving up the start of its two girls games against Logan Elm from 6 p.m. to 3 p.m. or even earlier. Shreyer said the school considered moving the games to later in the season, but decided that keeping the game on that Friday was a better option.

Rivals Lancaster and Newark opted to move their boys' game from Jan. 3 in Lancaster to Jan. 4.

"It's the last time I'm going to get to play at Lancaster," Newark senior guard Caleb Wilson said. "I don't want to lose fans for that game."

(Copyright 2002 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)