Crichlow: “Saving for a rainy day”

It was only three months ago, in the Veterans Memorial Building in Porterville, that Central Section commissioner Jim Crichlow trumpeted the section’s financial boon for the 2011-12 school year, announcing that a net of $1 million had been made through playoffs.

From that amount, $700,000 was returned to the section’s 94 schools and $300,000 to Crichlow’s CIF office, which operates on a $400,000 annual budget.

The section’s CIF reserve fund, meanwhile, ballooned to $450,000, which I published. And that drew a common reaction from readers: “What is it used for?”

To which Crichlow responded: “Never know when you might need some for a rainy day.”

And, sure enough, three months later — on what is typically the section’s most profitable day of the year — here we are.

On a day of five section football championships — one at Madera Ranchos, one at Clovis and three in Kern County — we’ve been hit hard with rain, particularly to the Valley’s north.

Forecast calls for it to stop by 7 p.m. kickoffs throughout the Valley.

Regardless, the damp conditions are sure to deter hundreds, if not thousands, of fans from attending the games in what I would expect to be the lowest collective turnout in years.

Bottom line: It will be interesting to see if the section makes budget in June. If not, Crichlow will have to tap the reserve fund to pay his administrative budget and for trophies and scholarships.

Fortunately, the section is so financially healthy, there’s no need to worry about all bills being paid and students/schools being properly recognized.