Football is back: CHSAA votes to allow football to return after Gov. Polis announces new guidelines |

Football is back: CHSAA votes to allow football to return after Gov. Polis announces new guidelines

Moffat County High School's Ryan Peck scrambles against Sterling in 2019.
Andy Bockelman

The State of Colorado will have high school football this fall after all.

The office of Gov. Jared Polis announced new guidance for organized sports Wednesday, leading to the Colorado High School Activities Association’s Board of Directors holding a meeting Wednesday night.

After reviewing the new guidance and communicating with the governor’s office, CHSAA’s Board of Directors voted late Wednesday to allow schools the opportunity to play fall sports such as football, field hockey and sideline cheer, beginning later this month.

The decision to play football in the fall will be up to each district whether to participate in Season A, the usual fall season, or Season C, the new season designated to fall sports that were not approved for Season A.

“We have worked closely with CHSAA to approve their request, issue guidelines and assist in creating a process that supports a return to football, field hockey and cheer,” said Governor Jared Polis in a news release Wednesday. “If the CHSAA board decides to add these sports to their fall calendars, it will be up to local school districts, administrators and parents to choose what is right for their communities. The state has approved these requests in order to empower all schools to make the choice that is right for them and their student athletes.”

The new guidelines in the variance for football will allow up to 50 players per sideline, excluding coaches, referees or umpires, on the field at a time. The guidelines also requests that teams keep players in cohorts, ideally the same ones they maintain at school, to minimize the number of new contacts. For field hockey, the variance allows for 25 people per sideline, per game.

Everyone, including players and coaches must wear a mask when not actively playing, and must remain six feet apart from non-household members while on the sidelines, according to the guidelines.

“I want to thank my colleagues on the board,” said Troy Baker, the president of the Board of Directors, in a news release. “The CHSAA Board is charged to make the best decision for all kids in our state. We are a diverse state and many of our schools are faced with unique challenges that can elevate the complexity in making a decision that supports all schools and students.”

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