The New York State Public High School Athletic Association [NYSPHSAA] announced the start date for high-risk winter sports has been pushed back to Jan. 4
High-risk winter sports, include team oriented sports with little ability to play at a safe distance from teammates and/or their opponents. These include basketball, ice hockey, wrestling and volleyball.
Low- and moderate-risk sports that will be allowed to begin Nov. 30 include indoor track and field, swimming, and bowling
NYSPHSAA Executive Director Robert Zayas said conversations with state officials have been “very positive” and that both parties are “working with the same common goal.”
Zayas reiterated that the Jan. 4 start date for high-risk winter sports is arbitrary and authorization from state officials is needed.
“The reason we picked Jan. 4 is it gives us more time to work with state officials as they examine and analyze their metrics. We understand that state officials are extremely busy, and they are inundated with issues and obstacles and challenges associated with the COVID crisis. We are being patient and we are cognizant of the fact that there is a priority list, and at this point in time high school sports is not at the top of that priority list,” Zayas said.
“There’s close to 600,000 student-athletes that are relying on our association to provide them with the opportunity to participate in interscholastic athletics,” Zayas said. “We take that opportunity very seriously and we’re going to do everything we possibly can to provide those opportunities for student-athletes. Our decision in September (to create a Fall II season that begins in March) is evidence of that.”
Even with statewide guidelines, official return dates are being determined by each individual state section.