The three remaining Fall tournaments still to be completed this 2020 season by the Michigan High School Athletic Association will resume, with teams allowed to restart practice Monday, Dec. 21, according to an announcement today allowing those activities to resume by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) and a plan approved by the MHSAA’s Representative Council.
The MHSAA’s Football, Girls Volleyball and Girls Swimming & Diving teams and individuals still participating in tournament play will be allowed to do so as part of an MDHHS pilot rapid testing program designed to gain insight and collect data on the spread of COVID-19 as the MDHHS plans to provide expanded rapid testing availability to schools in January. It is anticipated that specifics and details of the Fall tournament pilot testing program will be coming from the MDHHS.
All previous safety protocols remain in place, and no spectators will be allowed at the Fall tournament events.
All indoor Winter sports – which are not part of the pilot rapid testing program – remain on pause from the MDHHS until Jan. 16, although girls and boys alpine skiing season – competed outdoors and following safety protocols including all activity must be outdoors – will be allowed to begin practice Monday, Dec. 21. The Council will meet again Tuesday, Dec. 22, to discuss details for the rest of Winter sports.
All Spring 2021 sports are expected to begin on time and play complete seasons concluding with their traditional MHSAA Tournament dates in May and June.
Playoffs, winter sports still on hold
Mark Uyl, executive director of the Michigan High School Athletic Association, responded to today’s announcement by Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) extending the “pause” in activities, including school sports, that was set to expire Dec. 8.
“We realize the crisis our medical caregivers and first responders are navigating and understand the need to continue the pause. However, the MHSAA had provided a detailed plan to both Governor Whitmer and MDHHS that would have completed fall tournaments with no spectators as safely as possible during the month of December along with allowing winter sport practices to resume. While we are disappointed in today’s announcement, we will continue to look forward as we remain committed to play three sports seasons to their conclusion. The MHSAA Representative Council will meet on Wednesday of this week to chart out another plan for finishing Fall and restarting Winter.”
The Representative Council will meet Wednesday (Dec. 9) to discuss the next steps for Fall tournaments that remain suspended and Winter sports in the early stages of their seasons. Today’s statement will be the MHSAA’s only comment until the Council meets.