An Idea to Save the 2020-2021 High School Sports Season
The most frustrating thing about COVID-19 and its affects on high school sports is the waiting.
Nobody knows what is going to happen – not athletes, not coaches, not administrators.
Because decisions about high school sports have to be based on decisions about going back to school. And those decisions are difficult and, no matter what they are in the end, will be controversial.
Everybody wants schools to open and everybody wants high school teams to play. But making that happen safely will be tricky. A lot of it depends on how people behave, whether they accept the decisions about how we need to protect ourselves.
New Jersey has come through a long struggle with this virus. Once a hotbed of infections and deaths, things have slowed down in the Garden State. But, with so many visitors to the state over the spring and summer, precautions are still necessary. Today, Gov. Murphy issued an order requiring masks in public, a step that might not be popular but should help limit another flareup of the virus here.
Keep in mind, the death rate from COVID-19 has decreased a bit (it’s now between four and five percent of those infected) but it has kept people sick for months, led to strokes with partial paralysis and created permanent respiratory illnesses.
The College of New Jersey has cancelled fall sports. So has Stanford and the entire Ivy League. More are coming.
Initially, there was some talk about switching high school football, considered a high-risk sport, to the spring and moving baseball, a lower risk sport, to the fall. There were, of course, other ideas about delaying the start of fall sports. In fact, a few small delays have already happened.
There seems to be a feeling among health experts that things could be better with COVID-19 by the end of the year. Its an optimistic feeling, but it based on some science.
So, here is an idea.