By Andy Villamarzo
Hernando Sun staff sports writer
BROOKSVILLE- Hernando County School Board has followed the example of counties throughout the state of Florida and that’s the delaying of high school sports for 2020. The difference in Hernando County’s announcement is there is no set date in returning, as they have announced an indefinite delay of fall high school sports.
Now the five public high schools in Hernando County will have to wait until a date is set on when they can resume practices in anticipation of the 2020 campaign. The state’s most popular sport, high school football, will have to sit in a holding pattern until some kind of plan is set in place to return.
Below is the media release that was sent out from Hernando County Schools.
HERNANDO SCHOOLS ANNOUNCE DELAY OF FALL SPORTS
Today, the Hernando School District announced the decision to postpone the start of their fall sports, indefinitely, due to coronavirus.
Citing recommendations made in a July 19th report, provided by the FHSAA Sports Medicine Advisory Committee (SMAC), the district based their decision to delay the start of fall athletics until the community shows a “Downward trajectory of positive tests…” as supported in the report.
District officials will monitor data, provided by the Department of Health, to determine when football, volleyball, cross country, golf, swimming and cheerleading may begin their season. When public health benchmarks are met, schools in Hernando are likely to hold in-conference games only. A conference schedule will be developed if the season starts without a lengthy delay.
At this time, student athletes in Hernando may continue with voluntary conditioning with all district health safeguards and procedures in place.
On Monday night, Florida High School Athletic Association’s board of directors unanimously voted to deny a three-phase plan for starting fall sports. Many coaches, athletic directors and players were weighing in their opinions heavily via social media about wanting to start or delay the high school seasons for fall sports.
The FHSAA’s executive director George Tomyn previously recommended not adopting the proposal, which would have set staggered start dates for practices in cross country, football, golf and volleyball. This idea would have given more options in regards to areas around the state of Florida hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic. Instead, Florida’s high school association has voted to keep the fall seasons going as scheduled despite the uptick in cases.
Andy Villamarzo can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @avillamarzo.