WCIA — The Illinois High School Association announced Thursday that all winter sports and activities must be paused by Nov. 20.
The IHSA Board of Directors made the decision in a special meeting Thursday to better comply with mitigations put in place by Governor Pritzker. The organization says conditioning, weight training, and open gyms all have to stop. Outdoor workouts can still be held, as long as the groups are less than 10 people and masks are worn.
“All IHSA sports and activities will cease by November 20 for what we hope is a short-term pause,” said IHSA Executive Director Craig Anderson in a statement. “Given the rising COVID-19 cases in our state and region, we support the Governor’s mitigations and believe it is imperative for everyone in the state to do their part in following them so that we can return to high school sports participation as soon as possible.”
Nov. 16 will also no longer be the official start date for winter sports, the board of directors say they will reconvene Dec. 2 to revisit their decision.
“Taking into account the current state mitigations, the Board believes that early to mid-December will be the most reasonable target to review the status of winter IHSA sports and activities,” said Anderson. “The Board is sensitive to the scheduling difficulties these delays create for athletic directors and coaches. However, our experiences this summer and fall lead us to believe that setting arbitrary start dates hinders the process even more. We realize it may seem redundant, but we have to preach patience as we await more data and direction from the state. Despite the obstacles this unprecedented school year has presented, the Board’s vision to provide participation opportunities in all IHSA sports has not wavered.”