KSHSAA Delays Announcement after Gov. Kelly's declaration
Friday was supposed to be a news-filled day for high school sports teams throughout the state of Kansas, capped off by the first event played since COVID-19 shut down high school sports in mid-March - the Shrine Bowl.
Now, while the KSHSAA goes back to the drawing board, the realization of a delayed start to the fall sports season is setting in for student/athletes throughout the state.
Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly has announced that she will sign an executive order to keep schools closed through Labor Day, which will knock out all contests for at least a two-week period. Fall Sports practices won't begin as scheduled, which was August 17th, when most schools would have been in session.
It's now anticipated that, unless KSHSAA announces otherwise, contests won't be played as scheduled until the middle of September at the earliest. KSHSAA will be announcing its plans for a shortened fall season in the coming days.
KSHSAA's full statement:
The sport at greatest risk of not happening - football, which is considered a higher risk sport within the Return to Play guidelines issued by the National Federation of High Schools back in May. The NFHS has also modified the mask rule, which permits either a face covering or a shield covering the mask - something the NFL is planning to experiment with if they get to play this season.
Other high risk sports, according to the guidelines - wrestling, boys lacrosse, competitive cheer and dance.
Moderate-risk sports include basketball, volleyball, baseball, softball and tennis. Also, swimming relays were considered moderate-risk events.
Any event where social distancing can be practiced and cut down on the use of shared equipment is considered low risk of transmission of COVID-19. Included in that list are cross country, individual swimming, golf, and individual running events. Some events can become low risk with proper cleaning of equipment and wearing of face coverings - which includes volleyball, baseball and softball and tennis, as well as field events including the jumps.
The NFHS guidelines can be found here.