Quarterback Derrick Becker participated in Olympia High School’s football practice Thursday, one day after the senior won his appeal to play varsity football for the Bears this fall.
On Wednesday night, a five-person West Central District III eligibility hearing committee ruled the 6-foot, 185-pounder eligible for all varsity athletics at Olympia High after he transferred from district rival Capital over the summer.
Because of what Olympia athletic director Tim Ahern described as “new territory for everyone” regarding an amended Family Unit rule in Section 18.10.0 of the 2013-14 Washington Interscholastic Activities Association Handbook, he originally declared Becker ineligible for varsity competition in late July. Becker’s appeal was sent to the WCD III eligibility committee after the school sought advice from the WIAA.
Ahern said based on administrators’ interpretation of the rule, “we had to follow the way it’s written, but it had to go through appeals.”
In June, Aric Becker, Derrick’s father, told The Olympian he and his son planned to rent a home within the Olympia High School boundaries after his wife, Angie, and their youngest daughter planned a move to Hawaii, where Angie Becker had a job offer.
Derrick Becker, who attended Capital three years and quarterbacked the Cougars the past two seasons, threw for more than 2,300 yards and 25 touchdowns while leading Capital to the Class 3A state quarterfinals in 2011 and the 2A state semifinals last fall. Transfer paperwork was filed to attend Olympia after the 2012-13 school year.
Bears coach Bill Beattie said last week Becker and junior Kaden Wilson shared snaps “50-50” this summer while senior Charlie Allaire was also in the mix at quarterback. The 6-foot-3 Wilson was a part-time starter for the Bears in 2012.
“Whoever (the starting quarterback) is, I am confident,” Beattie said.
Through Ahern, Aric Becker declined The Olympian’s request for comment.
Meg Wochnick: 360-754-5473 firstname.lastname@example.org theolympian.com/southsoundsports @MegWochnick