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AIA going forward with plans to start fall sports season

WINDOW ROCK

The Arizona Interscholastic Association is going to continue plans on the start dates they approved in early August for the 2020 fall sports season.

In an executive meeting on Wednesday, the AIA “endorse the latestest guidelines by the Sports Medicine Advisory Committee (SMAC) for the safe implementation of a return to sport and activity.

These plans apply to the schools that will have fall sports as some schools have opted out. In particular, all of the schools within the borders of the Navajo Nation have cancelled their fall sports season.

In a press release, the AIA said they reviewed the recommendations from SMAC before reaching its decision. And based on the declining new cases of COVID-19 the past two weeks the board “felt competitive sports and activities at the member schools can be successful within recommended guidelines.”

“I would like to say on behalf of the staff and the Sports Medicine Advisory Committee, especially for the sport of football, we would not have been able to make this decision until this time right now based on the metrics,” AIA Executive Director David Hines said in a press release. “So the metrics have gotten to a place that we can start football practice. That we can start the heat acclimatization (guidelines). That we can get kids in a helmet and shoulder pads and begin doing work.”

The AIA advised all participating schools to follow the recommened guidlelines for the return of sports and activities.

According to the AIA, the sport of golf has already started competition while cross-country, swimming & diving, badminton, fall soccer and volleyball are in the midst of tryouts with football having the option of beginning practice on Monday.

Each fall sports will have a postseason, the AIA stated. However, each sport will have some modifications in place and they’ll be released on a later dates with season dates and team schedules on the AZPreps.com website.

“To say we are happy to be where we are now is an understatement,” Hines added. “The Board members really took their time to make sure that this could be done safely. We think that it definitely can. With the help of everyone at our member schools doing their part, we can absolutely make this a memorable season.”


About The Author

Quentin Jodie

Quentin Jodie is the Sports Editor for the Navajo Times. He started working for the Navajo Times in February 2010 and was promoted to the Sports Editor position at the end of summer in 2012. Previously, he wrote for the Gallup Independent. Reach him at qjodie@navajotimes.com

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