Fri. Feb 23rd, 2024

NMAA releases “hopeful” plan to include all sports for the 2020-2021 school year

SANTA FE (KSMX)- In an effort to ensure students have the opportunity to participate in the sports of their choosing during the 2020-2021 school year, the NMAA has created an amended calendar that provides seasons for all 13 sports sanctioned by the Association.

NMAA Executive Director, Sally Marquez, released “Plan B” through an informational video on the NMAA website. However, it is to be noted that this schedule is subject to change due to the “ever-evolving” coronavirus pandemic.

It was announced that basketball, soccer, football and wrestling summer workouts are to be canceled and seasons postponed. Because of the 5-1 minimum practice pods, volleyball and cross country will be able to participate in their season. However, Volleyball will be pushed to October and Cross Country will start their season mid-September to give students a chance to acclimate to the new school year.

Additionally, any practices or workouts conducted by non-contact sport teams, such as cross country, must be held in adherence to public health orders. Athletes, coaches, and all other participants are required to wear masks at all times while exercising and are also required to practice social distancing and other procedures as outlined by the New Mexico Activities Association (NMAA).

After contacting the governor’s office, the NMAA also announced coaches and students will not be forced to take COVID-19 tests unless contact tracing is needed because of exposure to the virus.

Marquez stated that as of right now there will be 10-12 week seasons per sport (depending on the sport) assuming schools start on time. A survey was sent to superintendents across the state where 85% were comfortable with sports continuing through June. She also stated that the Public Education Department has planned a hybrid re-entry plan for schools and “as long as that is still in effect, there will be sports”. If schools are later closed because of further health mandates, sports competitions will also be canceled.

There will be no overnight travel during the season for athletes. Marquez stated that there have been discussions with Athletic Directors on how to prevent long road trips where any team needs to stay overnight. Because of travel and mass gathering restrictions, tournaments will also no longer take place.

The question all sport fans are asking right now is whether they will be allowed to watch games. There is little information at this time but further safety practices such as ticketless games, temperature checks and spaced seating are being looked into.

Because of many uncertainties, playoffs/championships will be announced at a later time when more information is available.

“I am hopeful. This isn’t ideal but we are prepared one way or another, it is workable. All we ask of parents and athletes is to be flexible.”

Per the schedule from the NMAA, the tentative dates for both the start of the official season and state championship events for each sport are listed below:

Sport Start Date State Championships
Cross Country Sept. 14 November 13-14
Golf (Fall Season) Sept. 14 June 21-22
Volleyball Oct. 5 December 4-12
Basketball Jan. 4 March 1-13
Swimming & Diving Jan. 4 March 13 & 20
Spirit TBD March 26-27
Soccer Feb. 15 April 12-17
Football Feb. 22 April 23-24 & 30, May 1 & 8
Wrestling April 5 June 7-12
Baseball April 5 June 21-26
Softball April 5 June 21-26
Golf (Spring Season) April 5 June 21-22
Tennis April 5 June 14-19
Track & Field April 5 June 17-19 & 24-26

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