Just one week ago, PIAA announced its plans to go ahead with contact and/or close quarters sports, such as football, soccer, field hockey, and cross country. The PIAA Board of Directors voted 25-5 in favor of continuing fall sports, defying the recommendation of Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf after meeting with him on August 14. In a press release on August 21, PIAA stated, “The PIAA Board of Directors has heard the thousands of voices of student-athletes, parents, coaches, officials as well as community leaders that have contacted us. We remind those individuals who have strongly advocated for athletics that they must keep strict adherence to school health and safety plans.” However, the decision ultimately lies with each school district, if its respective athletic league decides to move forward with fall sports as well.
Even though the PIAA cleared fall sports, the Central League did not agree with their deicison to do so. Upon the recommendation of the Pennsylvania Department of Education, Chester and Montgomery County Health Departments, and the Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf, the Central League has determined that it is not safe to continue with fall sports at the moment due to COVID-19 and announced it on Twitter today.
However, the Central League isn’t giving up on fall sports just yet, as they are suggesting teams to continue their voluntary, off-season workouts in accordance with local safety guidelines. Their tweet mentioned working with the PIAA to create alternative solutions, which could include fall sports that start later, or shortened schedules for each team.