SMC updates banner to honor football champions of the past

For the more than eight years, there has been a notable omission amongst the various championship banners that grace the walls of the Corsair Pavilion. Earlier this week, the football championship banner was updated to include SMC’s most recent championship, the 2011 American Pacific Conference Championship, as well as the 2003 Western Sate South Division Championship from eight seasons ago.

Joe Cascio, Project Manager of SMC Athletics, saw no malice in the omission and attributed it to being “nothing more than a clerical error.”

Following the completion of the 2011 season, Cascio and the athletic department had been looking into the last time SMC had won a football championship.

“We did some research and saw it,” Cascio said.

In 2003, SMC football under Head Coach Robert Tayler finished the regular season with a 6-1 record in conference play and an overall record of 7-3. The 6-1 mark tied Citrus College for the conference championship. While tiebreaking rules allowed Citrus to represent the conference in the Divisional Championship, SMC was still recognized by the conference as the co-champion because it was tied for 1st place at the conclusion of the regular season.

While it seems like a long time for the omission to be corrected, there were contributing factors in delaying the discovery. Cascio would say “the records are sporadic at best” when describing the lack of depth and longevity in the information available on community college athletics.

Also contributing to the delay was the conference realignment that had been caused by the creation of the Southern California Football Association following the 2007 season, and had rendered recordkeeping from prior years obsolete.

Despite the error, there hasn’t seemed to be any repercussions for the school. For those concerned about the costs of updating the banner at a time when the school is strapped for cash, there is only a miniscule cost for the materials used.

Cascio sees the moment for SMC and its athletes as “nothing but positive anytime we can acknowledge champions of the past.”