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IHSA Sports to Remain on Hold

This afternoon the IHSA announced that contact days between athletes of teams that are not in season could begin as soon as they are approved by the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH).
“The IHSA acknowledges the immense mental, emotional, and physical strain that a lack of contact with school programs is causing Illinois high school student-athletes,” said IHSA Executive Director Craig Anderson. “It is our intention that these contact days provide sport-specific training under the leadership of high school coaches. This is an effort to provide a viable sports option to high school athletes given the growing number of student-athletes opting for higher risk opportunities within the state and across state lines.”
IHSA member schools that are currently in season can have one-on-one contacts between coaches and their athletes. That rule was allowed during the meeting of November 19, 2020.
The IHSA did say that when low-risk sports for the winter season are given the green light they will be allowed to practice immediately. They will also pick up their season calendar where the IHSA Board establishes it at a special meeting on January 27th.
The Board released the following joint statement after today’s meeting.
“We realize there is a desire for finality on a sports schedule for 2020-21, however, we did not believe it would be prudent to lock ourselves into a schedule at a time when IHSA schools are unable to conduct any sports. Per Governor Pritzker, we have hope that low-risk sports may be permitted in certain regions of the state as early as this Friday (January 15). With that in mind, February seems like a realistic timeline to have sports resume statewide. We expect that the events of the next two weeks will go a long way toward informing our opinion on which scheduling option we decide to proceed with. We recognize that if no sports have resumed by February, season lengths could be impacted in certain sports, and that we may need to take a longer look at the likelihood of true seasons being conducted in high-risk sports this year. Our overall goal remains unchanged, as we hope to conduct all IHSA sports during the remainder of the school year calendar. Please know that we see and read many of the comments and messages from student-athletes, coaches, and parents, and that we are doing everything we can to try and bring IHSA sports back within the current parameters we are working in.”

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