Governor announces fall sports practice can begin on Sept. 21 but no football games

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 24 August 2020 at 1:17 pm

With two major exceptions Governor Andrew Cuomo gave the go ahead this morning for the fall high school sports season to begin on September 21.

The governor announced that fall sports teams, which include football, boys and girls soccer, cross-country, golf, field hockey and volleyball, can begin practice on September 21.

All of those sports can then begin playing games with one major exception – football.

The governor’s announcement stated that while football teams can begin practicing on September 21 but as of now they cannot play games.

The governor’s announcement also stated that teams cannot practice or play games out of the school’s region or contiguous regions/counties until October 19.

Interestingly, the Niagara-Orleans League schools are split into two separate regions for the Covid-19 testing results. Albion and Medina are in the Finger Lakes Region while Roy-Hart, Barker, Akron, Newfane and Wilson are all in the Western New York Region.

“It’s kind of odd. I don’t know what to make of it,” said Medina Athletic Director and Varsity Football Coach Eric Valley.

“There are so many unknown,” said Albion Athletic Director and Varsity Football Coach Adam Krenning. “There is some good news though for our student-athletes and that is we will be able to start to practice on September 21.”

The situation now shifts to the New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) which has already scheduled a three day schedule to respond to the governor’s announcement.

Those three steps are as follows:

1 – Within 24 hours of the governor’s announcement Section Executive Directors, NYSPHSAA Officers and NYSPHSAA President Rbert Zayas will meet.

2 – Within 48 hours of the governor’s announcement the NYSPHSAA Covis-19 Task Force will meet.

3 – Within 72 hours of the governor’s announcement the NYSPHSAA Officers will render a decision “IF” necessary.