This year’s high school fall sports season will be delayed until at least December, the California Interscholastic Federation announced Monday, due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The three high school sports seasons — fall, winter and spring — are now scheduled to be played between December and June and will be condensed into two seasons: fall and spring.
Which means, Spring sports playoffs will be pushed back to May and June.
The move was made as the CIF takes every step to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
Most California schools are closed for on-campus instruction under a mandate by Gov. Gavin Newsom, until they pass certain health benchmarks, which made this announcement unsurprising.
The CIF said it had no choice but to delay the start of seasons by pushing the sports calendar into 2021.
Beaumont Athletic Director Martin DuSold said he is “grateful that our CIF state and sectional offices have put so much time and effort into putting out a calendar that will offer an opportunity to play all sports this year.”
Each CIF office released its own calendar on regular-season start and end dates.
Fall sports include boys and girls cross-country, field hockey, 11-man football, 8-man football, gymnastics, traditional competitive cheer, boys volleyball, girls volleyball, boys water polo and girls water polo.
Spring sports include badminton, baseball, boys and girls basketball, competitive sport cheer, boys and girls golf, boys and girls lacrosse, boys and girls soccer, softball, boys and girls swimming and diving, boys and girls tennis, boys and girls track and field, and boys and girls wrestling.
Dusold said it will definitely impact student-athletes as the new configuration of seasons will combine sports that do not normally play at the same time of the year, so it will be more challenging for those that play multiple sports due to the overlap.
“We have a number of staff members who coach multiple sports, so that will require a lot of hours to be concentrated into the newly configured seasons.”
In order to help with the overlap of seasons, CIF standarized the length of the regular seasons to approximately 72 days, for those that previously has more days than thatt, like soccer at 83 days or basketball with 81 days.
Sports like girls volleyball previously had 57 days will be left alone.
Although, the total number of days for some sports will be reduced approximately 5-12 percent, schools will still play the same number of maximum allowable contests, if they choose, in that smaller time frame.
Also, the CIF said there will be the same number of champions in each sport, the same number of divisions in each sport and the same number of guaranteed entries from leagues advancing to the playoffs in each sport, as in previous years.
In the meantime, a return to athletics will be dictated by COVID-19 data as assessed by the state and county health departments, so we do not have a timeline for actual return to participation at this time, said Dusold.
Pass area football season is slated for games to begin on Friday, Jan. 8 and conclude on Friday, March 12.