GALION — Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine last week said it will be up to local school district to determine if and when high school sports can start in the fall.
Also last week, the Ohio High School Athletic Association announced it is proceeding as if the fall season will start and run as advertised. OHSAA officials ares till looking at Aug. 1 for the start of practice for fall sports.
Despite a few interruptions locally due to positive COVID-19 tests, area high schools are approaching the upcoming season is if it will proceed as advertised.
Still, due to the rising number of positive COVID-19 tests in Ohio, there is apprehension among players, coaches and administrators as to whether the season will proceed.
Nonetheless, the Ohio High School Football Coaches Association has released a list of recommended changes to start the season during the COVID-19 pandemic.
THe OHSFCA worked with coaches, medical professionals and guidelines from the state to develop the following recommendations:
- Before, during, and after the contest, players, coaches, game officials, team personnel and game administration officials should wash and sanitize their hands as often as possible.
- Maintain social distancing of 6 feet at all times while on the sidelines and on the field of play when possible.
- Everyone should have his own beverage container. They should not be shared.
- Cloth face coverings are permissible for all coaches and team staff and for all game administration officials.
- Limit the number of non-essential personnel who are on the field level throughout the contest.
- If available, dressing facilities for game officials and teams should be large enough for them to use social-distancing protocols and should be properly cleaned and sanitized prior to their arrival.
- Public address announcements will be made periodically before, during, and after the contest to follow the guidelines set forth by the CDC.
- The continuous clock will be an option at the discretion of both head coaches in the first half if all OHSAA guidelines for a continuous clock are met.