Sports

As the 2020-21 school year approaches, it is still uncertain if, and when, the high school football season will begin.

NCHSAA delays fall season, some states say no to fall football

High school athletes, parents and community members in North Carolina have been left wondering if, how and when high school sports may return to competition following Gov. Roy Cooper’s recent announcement on July 14 that schools will reopen in August for both in-person and online instruction.

The day after Cooper’s announcement, the North Carolina High School Athletic Association (NCHSAA) delayed the fall sports season until at least Sept. 1, furthering the growing concern about how this school year will go and what extracurricular activities will be allowed.

Though fall sports are still a possibility, the outlook is rather grim, especially for football. The Virginia High School League scratched football from its fall sports season on July 15, but left open the option to play the season in 2021. On Monday, California delayed high school sports until at least December.

The NCHSAA remains in Phase One of its summer workout plan, which prohibits equipment sharing, among other limitations and safety procedures. Some schools, including Lejeune High School, have yet to resume in person workouts as COVID-19 infection statistics continue to raise concerns.

The NCHSAA stated in their response to Cooper’s plan that they are “in better position to make informed decisions concerning if, when and how to resume athletic competition.”

Fall sports deemed “low risk” by the NCHSAA’s guide are cross country, golf and tennis. Higher risk sports include football, cheerleading and soccer.

With some students and districts planning for in-person instruction, and some opting for the strictly virtual option this fall, it is far from certain just what the sports season may look like in our state.

Please note that this is a developing story. For the latest on high school sports in North Carolina, visit www.nchsaa.org or find the NCHSAA on social media.

To view Onslow County Schools’ reopening information, visit www.onslow.k12.nc.us. For information pertaining to schools on base, visit www.dodea.edu/returntoschool.cfm and the Camp Lejeune Community Schools Facebook page.