AHSAA announces sports plan this week

The Alabama High School Athletic Association will hold a press conference this week to outline the plan for fall sports such as football, volleyball and cross country.

AHSAA Executive Director Steve Savarese spoke to coaches, athletic directors and administrators last week during their annual summer conference, which was held virtually this year.

Savarese was emphatic about his goal to have a fall season. “We are in the business of promoting the business of sport,” he said, “and we want to give our kids a chance to participate.”

Among the expected announcements to be made this week will be contingency plans for fall sports statewide based on what is going on at certain dates; what will happen if a school or schools have to close; what will happen if a team isn’t able to play on a game date; what new game procedures will look like; and many other issues.

This week’s press conference is set for Thursday from 1-2 p.m. It will be televised and streamed live on the AHSAA website.

Two things appear certain, at least at this point: Fall sports will not move to the spring, and fan attendance will be based on local ordinances and school boards.

Savarese emphasized three actions to help ensure schools can have sports this school year:

  • First, practice physical distancing by staying at least 6 feet apart.
  • Second, wear a mask in public spaces or when in close contact with others.
  • Third, practice good hygiene and cleaning of spaces and equipment.

“We are going to need to be understanding, flexible and patient,” Savarese said. “Hopefully we can have a normal and full season for our student-athletes.”