OHSAA surveys member schools on fall


By Ben Stroup - bstroup@aimmediamidwest.com



The fall sports season is almost here.

That’s the good news.

The bad, though, is that area football, tennis, field hockey, golf, cross country, soccer and volleyball teams still — with official practices set to start as early as Saturday — don’t know what the season will look like.

Or if there will even be a season at all.

The Ohio High School Athletic Association has reiterated its plan to begin official fall sports practices on time for weeks.

It did it again Monday, but also announced it reached out to member schools in case the plans have to be altered in any way.

In a survey emailed to member schools’ administrators, the OHSAA asked six multiple-choice questions to help guide it should the fall season be derailed due to increasing COVID-19 cases.

One of the questions asked administrators how they’d proceed knowing what they knew on Monday. Choices ranged from starting as scheduled to postponing to later in the 2020-21 school year.

Others asked if administrators prefer to continue to split sports into “contact” and “non-contact” classifications, if they have a preference on the length of a possible delay to fall sports and if any confirmed cases of COVID-19 were traced to summer workouts at the school.

Bexley, Westerville Central and Danville have all halted practices in the last several days due to athletes testing positive for the COVID-19 coronavirus.

Still, if given the green light by Gov. Mike DeWine and the Ohio Department of Health, preseason practices will be a go this weekend.

Football will have two scrimmages, or one scrimmage, one preview and one Jamboree permitted after seven days of practice. The season is slated to start Aug. 24, according to a document the Ohio High School Athletic Association sent member schools Friday outlining how fall sports could look if the Ohio Department of Health doesn’t order any changes.

The document also said soccer teams will get four scrimmages and a preview with the first contests set for Aug. 21; and field hockey will get five scrimmages with a start date of Aug. 21 as well.

No scrimmages will be permitted for cross country, with the first race slated for Aug. 24 (with the exception of the OHSAA Invitational Aug. 15).

As for the non-contact sports — golf, tennis and volleyball — they’ll start Aug. 5, 7 and 21, respectively.

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By Ben Stroup

bstroup@aimmediamidwest.com