By Tim Chambers
Last week everyone thought they would have the news as to when the 2020 high school football season would start and the number of games that teams would play, but that not the case due to the TSSAA dropping the ball last week and passing on a vote.During a Board of Control meeting aimed at picking a high school football contingency plan for the 2020 season, no decision was made due to a 30 minutes delay in a private legislative session.
The TSSAA Board of Control failed to reach a decision during a 10-minute session because they failed to take action on the matter because of the number rise in COVID-19 cases. TSSAA Director Bernard Childress recommended that they lobby with Tennessee Governor Bill Lee for a waiver that would allow not only high school football but girl’s soccer and volleyball to be played as scheduled. ,Childress said the governor’s council needed time to what the numbers and work with his staff before a decision could be made.
At present, Governor Lee’s has announced a continuance of an Executive Order that includes a state of emergency that disallows contact sports in high school athletics through August 29. The TSSAA has ,petitioned Lee to include high school sports with college and pro sports as exempted from the order, allowing each sport affected to start their seasons as scheduled. Johnson County Athletic Director Austin Atwood feels like the season could be delayed until after Labor Day, meaning that the football schedules would likely be reduced from 10 to 7 games.
“It would be so much easier for the kids if they knew we were going to have a football season,” said Johnson County head football coach Don Kerley. “So far, they have been very positive at practice and are going hard.”
Cases have continued to rise in Tennessee since last week. On Wednesday, 2,478 new cases of COVID-10 were reported, a single high than any previous day. Expect an announcement to be made by the TSSAA later this week.