Full-contact football will not be held this fall in any format, the CIAC said in a released statement Wednesday afternoon. The CIAC Board of Control voted on this decision on Wednesday morning, a day earlier that its listed scheduled meeting.
The Board of Control did decide to revisit and keep the option open to play 11 on 11 full-contact football this spring, “provided it does not negatively impact spring sports.” But it did not ultimately commit to a spring season.
The CIAC said it would attempt to find alternate solutions for football players this fall.
“DPH continues to recommend substituting ‘higher risk’ athletic activities with ‘moderate risk’ or ‘lower risk’ options and/or postponing those activities to a later time,” the CIAC said in its statement, referring to the Connecticut Dept. of Health’s recommendations.
“In alignment with those recommendations, by the end of this week, through its football committee, the CIAC will recommend low and moderate-risk football activities in which schools may continue to engage their football athletes.”
According to sources, the high school football committee is scheduled to meet Thursday to discuss modified options for fall football, such as the possibility of 7 on 7 or linemen drills this fall.
The Board had previously stated any fall sports not able to be held beginning Oct. 1, the current start date for the fall regular season, would not be moved to the spring.
Photo: Matthew Brown / Hearst Connecticut Media
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The Board decided on Sept. 4 to cancel the option of 11 on 11, full-contact football after receiving information from the state Department of Health the day before that it continued to view football in it current state as high-risk.
“CIAC made every effort to weigh all factors in this decision, including the passionate voices of students, parents, and school personnel, and ultimately made the determination to align its decision with the recommendations of the Governor’s office and DPH to not hold high-risk sports at this time,” CAS-CIAC Executive Director Glenn Lungarini said in the statement.
“In conversation with other state associations across the country, it was clear that a key factor in playing interscholastic football was alignment with the opinion of their state’s governor and state health agency.”
The CIAC and DPH met Friday at the Capitol to discuss CIAC strategies to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. DPH responded Monday, saying the strategies weren’t scientifically proven enough for DPH to come off its recommendation against playing full-contact football in the fall.
The long road of this summer led to that Sept. 4 announcement that the CIAC wouldn’t hold 11-on-11 competition this fall. Players held several rallies for a season, and after one on Sept. 9, Gov. Ned Lamont urged DPH and the CIAC to that Friday meeting.
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