MHSAA announces fall sports to start as normal


Sara-Beth Badalamente

Field hockey does their COVID-19 check before one of the return to play practices. Many other sports have been doing similar things for a modified preseason before fall sports officially start.

Quinn Newhouse, Sports Editor

Article last updated on July 23.

In their press release published on July 17, The Michigan High School Athletic Association announced fall sports to start/continue practicing, but notes safety is the MHSAA’s first priority.               

There is the potential for changes in schedule due to COVID-19. So far, many fall teams have already begun practices and scrimmages to prepare for the upcoming season, and with this recent news, they have more motivation to train.

 MHSAA executive director Mark Uyl explained what this means moving forward for safety and contingency plans if schools do not choose to open fully in the fall.

“We would evaluate based on how many schools are open and what the local plans for sports would include,” Uyl said. “For sports to happen, schools must be in Phase 4 or 5, Phase 3 and lower would mean no sports for that school.” 

Uyl also spoke about specific rule changes.

“All sports will have playing rule modifications,” Uyl said. “Those sport-specific documents will be released next week.”

Huron football player sophomore Aravind Krishnan has been practicing with the team.

“I definitely feel like it is safe,” Krishnan said. “This season will mean a lot to me and my teammates as we have been granted a chance to prove ourselves when the chance could have been taken away. I am extremely thankful for the MHSAA’s decision to let us play, and I can’t wait to get out there.”

Boy’s Cross Country captain senior Evan Ridenour is torn about the news.

“On one hand, I’m looking forward to being able to compete in my final high school season, but I also want to not worry about getting the people around me sick,” Ridenour said. “Being from a traditionally low-risk sport, the only thing that worries me is the number of people at meets, I don’t know how they’ll make it safe.”

Men’s soccer coach Luis Gomez has been out with his teams running training sessions since it was deemed safe. 

“The coaching staff has been meeting with students four days per week since late June to get prepared for a fall season,” Gomez said. “We have been using “player pools” to help us with social distancing during training. Hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes, and masks have become part of our training set up. Each player checks in with myself and they are screened for symptoms before they can put their belongings in a marked area.”

Even with MHSAA’s decision to allow fall sports to have a normal season, there is still a lot of speculation around how sports will be implemented. Most official practices begin soon, and most games begin around the end of August or the beginning of September.