High School Outdoor Sports Authorized to Begin in SoCal Counties

Call it the best touchdown of the year in California high school sports.

The California Department of Public Health released its weekly coronavirus report on Tuesday, and those counties where the adjusted daily rate of cases had reached 14.0 or less per 100,000 are allowed to allow outdoor sports to start on Friday according to the state update. from youth sports published last week.

Counties that meet the threshold in Southern California include Los Angeles (12.3), Orange (11.9), and San Luis Obispo (9.4). Counties that do not meet the threshold are Ventura (16.9), San Bernardino (15.2), Riverside (16.6), and Santa Barbara (16.9). Last week, Los Angeles was at 20.0 and Orange County at 20.7, so the improvement has been rapid and gives hope to other counties. The next opportunity to hit the threshold is Tuesday, March 2.

Now it is up to individual schools, districts and counties to decide which sports to allow. For football and water polo, weekly tests are required from athletes and coaches, and results are available within 24 hours after the game.

A spokesperson for the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health said in a statement: “The [LACDPH] uses available science and current data to guide sector reopening, in consultation with the Board of Supervisors. We will consult with the Board of Supervisors to evaluate the state recommendations and when to adopt changes to the County Health Officer Order that would allow youth (contact) sports to resume. “

If Los Angeles County defied state recommendations to allow outdoor sports, presumably the outcry in the community would be strong and intense.

Most sports competitions have been on hold for 11 months. Cross country began on January 25 and women’s tennis began on Monday. Now others will follow, such as baseball, softball, lacrosse, golf, and swimming. Soccer is allowed to start Saturday in Orange and Los Angeles counties.

“It’s throwing us into a frenzy. It’s amazing, ”said West Hills Chaminade Athletic Director Todd Borowski, who must build new schedules and determine how he will share his athletic facilities six days a week for competitions and practices while implementing safety protocols.

A major soccer game between Bellflower St. John Bosco and Chatsworth Sierra Canyon Private Schools is already confirmed on March 12 in St. John Bosco. Sierra Canyon coach Jon Ellinghouse said he texted all of his players with five exclamation points: “We got to our number. The game is on. Wear helmets to practice. “

When will the football games start?

The clock can start on Tuesday towards the mandatory 14 days of practice, and schools can begin three conditioning days before full practice with pads can begin on Friday. Games can be played after 10 days of practice. Games are likely to start March 11-12 or March 18-19 for a five- or six-game season that should end April 17 in the South Section.

Once a county reaches an adjusted case rate of 14 cases per 100,000, what happens if the cases spike suddenly?

The state cautions that “return to competition status is subject to change at any time given the level of COVID-19 transmission in California,” but outdoor sports teams can play and continue to play regardless of changing numbers. unless a new stay is made. -The house order is issued by the state or a county decides to impose a stricter guideline.

Are students allowed to play two sports?

The California Department of Public Health has encouraged athletes and coaches to limit participation to one team during the same season or period of time. The CIF received confirmation from the CDPH that this is a recommendation, not a mandate. It is up to each school and school district to decide. The CIF rule that limits students to no more than 18 hours of activity per week for school-related sports will be enforced.

What is the state of indoor sports?

Some schools are considering outdoor competitions in wrestling, basketball, and volleyball. The CIF plans to advocate for those sports to resume indoors with mask use if the daily case rate continues to decline.

Will Los Angeles Unified Students be able to play sports this school year?

Supt. Austin Beutner announced Monday that sports conditioning will resume on campuses next week. That’s a first step towards the comeback of any sport, but you have yet to change your stance since November that if it’s not safe enough to be in a classroom, then it’s not safe enough to compete in sports. LAUSD continues in distance education.

Can schools program any opponent?

No. There are strict guidelines for competition between teams. Both teams must be located in the same county or the opponent must be located in a border county where the sport is authorized to be played. Tournaments involving more than two teams are not allowed. This guideline is something the CIF hopes can be revised because it would prevent the playoffs from taking place this spring in large sections like the South Section.

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