Board addresses Governor’s order and discusses contingency plans for football

Multiple options for Football considered with plan to extend season for Girls’ Soccer

July 1, 2020

The TSSAA Board of Control held a special called meeting on Wednesday, July 1, 2020 to discuss the effect that the extended COVID-19 State of Emergency will have on contact sports in the fall. Football, girls’ soccer and competitive cheer are considered contact sports.

The Board voted unanimously to mandate that member schools follow the Governor’s executive order for sports activities.

Bernard Childress, Executive Director, briefed the Board on what schools are permitted to do after the Dead Period. A detailed document outlining COVID-19 accommodations for sport competitions will be sent to the membership prior to each season.

Only weightlifting, conditioning and fundamental work with no contact is permitted for football, soccer, girls’ soccer, wrestling, basketball and competitive cheer. Football will not be permitted to participate in “7-on-7” competitions due to the extended State of Emergency. Cross country, golf and volleyball will be able to continue, with accommodations, as scheduled. While the association does not sanction cheerleading, it does offer a competitive cheer and dance championship and competitive cheer would fall under the Governor’s order impacting contact sports.

Regarding girls’ soccer, the state office is exploring postponing the state championship to allow a few additional weeks for the regular season. Practice could begin on August 30, with the potential to extend the season and conduct the state championships a few weeks later than usual.

Four plans for football were discussed. Those plans are as follows:

  1. If the executive order expires on Aug. 29, practice would begin on Aug. 30 with the first game on Sept. 18. All regular season schedules for schools would be replaced by the state office with a seven-week region schedule for all schools. Playoffs would be conducted as usual, but schools that do not make the playoffs would be able to play two extra games after the regular season.
  2. If the executive order expires on Aug. 29, practice could begin on Aug. 30 with the first game on Sept. 18. All regular season schedules for schools would be replaced by the state office with an eight-week region schedule. The regular season would extend into Week 12 and the first-round of the playoffs would be eliminated (only region champions and runners-up would qualify). Teams that do not qualify for the playoffs would be able to play two extra games after the regular season.
  3. If the executive order expires on Aug. 29, practice would begin on Aug. 30 with the first game on Sept. 18. Schools would keep their current schedule and begin play with the Week 5 game on September 18. Games scheduled against member schools for Week 3 would be played in Week 12. Games scheduled against member schools for Week 4 would be played in Week 13. Only region champions would advance to the playoffs beginning in Week 14. Schools that do not qualify for the playoffs would be able to play one extra game.
  4. Cancel playoffs and championships. Start practice on August 30. Schools play games as scheduled beginning with Week 5 games on September 18. Move games against member schools from Weeks 1-4 to Weeks 12-15.

The Board will meet again on July 8 to make a decision regarding football.

The Board also voted to table the discussion on classification and requested that the staff try to secure a location to hold a face-to-face meeting for the classification study session.

Documents

BOC 7 20 Minutes (PDF)

About Brad Jones

Brad is the Owner/Operator of BBB TV 12, and has been with the company since August of 1996. Brad is a 1987 graduate of Coalfield High School and a 1995 graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Communications. He won the 1995 broadcast production student of the year award. Brad worked at Shop at Home, Inc. a home shopping network that was located in Knoxville, TN from 1993 - 1995 and then at Via TV (RSTV, Inc.) from 1995 - 1996. After some freelance work in Nashville, Brad joined the BBB Communications staff in August of 1996. A short stint at WVLT TV as a news photographer was in 2001, but he continued to work at BBB TV as well. Brad is married to Nicole Jenkins Jones, a 1990 graduate of Oak Ridge High School, who works at Oak Ridge Gastroenterology and Associates in Oak Ridge. They have 3 kids, Trevor Bogard, 27, Chandler 22, and Naomi 13. On December 12, 2013 they welcomed their first grandchild, Carter Ryan Bogard. Brad is also the assistant boys basketball coach at Coalfield High School for the past 11 years. In 2013-14 the Yellow Jackets won their first district title since 1991 and just the 4th in school history.

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