LATHAM – The New York State Public High School Athletic Association announced on Wednesday that high-risk sports (football, volleyball and competitive cheer) seasons will be postponed until March 1.
In a press release sent to athletic directors, NYSPHAA Executive Director Dr. Robert Zayas stated:
“We’ve spent two days speaking with nearly 500 athletic directors across the state and it’s clear that administering high-risk fall sports during the COVID-19 pandemic presents a significant challenge for our member schools. These are unprecedented times and unfortunately, difficult decisions will have to be made to address this ongoing crises. We continue to stay committed to providing support to our member schools and quality participation experiences for the students we serve.”
The high-risk sports seasons will adopt the “Fall Sports Season II” model similar to that of Massachusetts. Teams may officially begin practices on March 1.
As a result of the revised Fall Sports Season II, the spring sports season will move from its original date (March 15) to April 19, when teams will be able to start practicing.
On the decision to float high-risk sports to Fall Sports Season II, NYSPHSAA President Julie Bergman stated:
“The NYSPHSAA officers have determined it would be unrealistic to host football, volleyball and competitive cheer seasons this fall. This continues to be the most challenging situation educators have ever addressed. I, along with my fellow officers, believe the participation experiences for football, volleyball and competitive cheer athletes will be more beneficial in the spring than in fall.”
Low- and moderate-risk sports are still set to begin practice on Sept. 21 and are unaffected by Fall Season II.