TSSAA delays vote on high school football

By GOOSE LINDSAY

WECO NEWS

TSSAA was expected to vote a contingency plan for high school football and soccer at today’s Board of Control meeting, but no vote was taken as TSSAA Executive Director Bernard Childress says TSSAA is still working with Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee’s Economic Recovery Task Force to come up with a plan.

“We’re making progress,” Childress said. “We want to continue to work with the governor’s legal counsel. We will update the Board, the public and everyone when we come to a final decision with them.”

The TSSAA season was set to begin on Friday, Aug. 21 but has been delayed to the state’s ongoing state of emergency, which is set to expire on Aug. 29.

No contact can take place before Aug. 30, and with that date in mind, TSSAA currently plans to open the regular season on Friday, Sept. 18.

TSSAA was expected to vote between three plans today.

Option one would be a seven-game regular season with a traditional five-round playoff format involving 32 teams to begin on Nov. 6.

Teams not making the playoffs could play two extra games.

Option two would be an eight-game schedule with only 16 teams making the postseason, which would begin on Nov. 13.

Teams not making the playoffs could play two extra games.

Option three would be for a nine-game regular season with only region champions making the playoffs. The playoffs would begin on Nov. 20.

Teams not making the playoffs could play one extra game.

There is also still a chance that Gov. Lee could exempt high school athletics from his state of emergency, which would lead to the season starting on time on Aug. 21.

Childress said the key to any games being played will rely on reducing the number of Tennesseans infected with COVID-19.

“People need to wear masks, need to social distance and wash their hands,” he said. “We need to get our numbers down because that’s going to be the key.

“The return on that investment would be we do get to have fall sports hopefully on time this year.”

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