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High School Fall Sports Practice set to begin Monday

Grayson County’s Derrick Ruth runs through Hancock County defense in a 2018 game. Photo by: K105

Grayson County’s Derrick Ruth runs through Hancock County defense in a 2018 game. Photo by: K105

With the KHSAA’s decision on Thursday to uphold its previous fall sports plan, practice is set to start around the commonwealth on Monday.

Some school districts, like Jefferson and Fayette County, have delayed the impending start of practice and scheduled meetings on Monday evening to vote whether to move forward or not.

Thursday’s decision allows for soccer, volleyball, cross country, field hockey, and football to begin practicing. The sports have been stuck in a conditioning limbo since June 15th when they were allowed to begin workouts in small groups in congruence with Gov. Andy Beshear’s recommendation.

Since that point, teams have been waiting for the go-ahead to start practicing. In early July, the KHSAA voted to allow golf teams to begin competing on July 31st due to it being a “low contact sport” where social distancing can be properly enforced. The other sports have not reached a point where they can join in more organized practices.

During the first week of practice, the KHSAA Board of Control voted to limit the number of hours for the week to 7.5. Starting on August 31st, all time restrictions will be lifted.

In Thursday’s meeting, KHSAA Commissioner Julian Tackett said, “It will be imperative that teams continue with small cohorts in every feasible situation as that is vital to contact tracing in the event of a confirmed case.”

Tackett also told coaches and players to continue to “emphasize social distancing, hand washing, and masking/face coverings everywhere possible and practical.”

If everything goes as planned, the first football games will begin on September 11th with the other sports allowed to begin September 7th.

All plans put forth by the KHSAA must be approved by the Kentucky Department of Public Health, the Department of Education, and the Governor’s Office. It is not expected that a decision will come before teams are scheduled to take the field on Monday, but one could come earlier this week.

As far as what Beshear will decide, it really remains anyone’s guess at this point. With Indiana and Tennessee starting its seasons last week, the governor will more than likely keep a close eye to see what could come from that. No official decision has been made yet, but coaches and players remain in a wait and see mode.

In the case that Beshear would deny the agreement, the Board of Control is prepared to call a special meeting to see how to move forward. In that case, all signs point to the vouching for a Sept. 7 practice start date with games starting later in the month.

As of right now though, high school sports season is in the air. Here’s to hoping there can be a safe start to practice this week.

Article written by Sam Gormley

Follow me on Twitter @GormleyKSR; "The Whitest Man in the World"-JRock