While Ohio Governor Mike DeWine didn’t give the go-ahead on contact sports in his Thursday press conference, the Ohio High School Athletic Association had an optimistic tone in their administrator update sent out that day.
Interim Executive Director Bob Goldring said, “We continue in conversations with the Governor’s Office, are working tirelessly in a cohesive effort and believe our plans to move forward with the start of our seasons are in concert. The Governor, in fact, said an announcement will be forthcoming on Tuesday (Aug. 18).”
DeWine’s comments gave reason for that optimism, as he alluded to parents, schools and local health departments as the ones being able to make those decisions.
“The Lt. Governor and I will have an announcement on Tuesday about high school sports,” Governor DeWine said. “We’ve been working with the Ohio High School Athletic Association to get it right, to provide guidelines to make it as safe as possible. This is a decision that is going to be made by parents and by schools, and even local health departments. They’re going to make those decisions.
“I have a great deal of confidence in the coaches because they have the opportunity – not just in practice and not just in games – to impress upon their young men and women to keep a distance and be safe, but that it’s also important what they do when they’re not playing. We’re going to restrict the number of fans. We want the athletes to compete, we want the young people to have their seasons, but we want to do it as safely as possible. It’s about the kids. So we’ll be able to announce everything in more detail on Tuesday.”
Goldring added that, assuming they do get the go-ahead on Tuesday, there will be mandates and requirements that will be part of schools’ protocols, stating that most of these items will likely be state mandates that are already in place or recommendations previously provided by the OHSAA.
In line with that optimism, the KMAC announced their revised football schedule. With the OHSAA altering the season to include six regular season games and a playoff system in which all schools may participate and the option for schools to add regular season games when eliminated, the conference offered a schedule featuring six league games and the possibility of playing a final league contest in week eight or after schools are no longer in the playoffs, according to league commissioner Barry Wolf.
The new football schedule is below.
Week 1: Highland at Cardington, Centerburg at Danville, East Knox at Fredericktown, Mount Gilead at Northmor.
Week 2: Danville at Cardington, Centerburg at Mount Gilead, Northmor at East Knox, Fredericktown at Highland.
Week 3: Cardington at Northmor, East Knox at Centerburg, Fredericktown at Danville;, Highland at Mount Gilead.
Week 4: East Knox at Cardington, Centerburg at Highland, Danville at Northmor, Mount Gilead at Fredericktown.
Week 5: Cardington at Centerburg, Highland at Danville, Mount Gilead at East Knox, Northmor at Fredericktown.
Week 6: Cardington at Mount Gilead, Fredericktown at Centerburg, Danville at East Knox, Northmor at Highland.
Week 7: Playoffs
Week 8 (tentative): Cardington at Fredericktown, Northmor at Centerburg, Mount Gilead at Danville, East Knox at Highland.
Rob Hamilton can be reached at 419-946-3010, ext. 1807. Connect with him on Twitter at @SportsMCS