Governor Mike DeWine said all Ohio High School Sports can play this fall. He also said that some school districts are allowed to move the season for contact sports like football and hockey to the spring due to COVID-19 fears.
“We know that sports, especially contact sports, do increase the risk of spread. The more spread there is in a community, the more spread there will be in schools. On the other hand, we all know the importance of sports. Sports matters, it makes a difference.”
DeWine said no spectators other than family members or individuals very close to the student-athletes are allowed to attend games. Parents of members of the marching bands, drill teams, and cheerleaders are also permitted to attend games.
The Governor said he understands why some school districts chose to cancel their fall sports. He said the decision to move or cancel the season is up to the local school districts. “That choice is up to the individual school systems. Any decision about playing or not playing sports cannot be made in a vacuum. We also know that each young person is different and has different needs.”
The Governor said these rules apply to all sports in Ohio, not just those played by schools.
This Year, It’s Going To Take More
Governor DeWine called on coaches to inspire young people to stay safe from the virus.
“I would express a hope. I hope the desire to have a season will inspire our young people to 24/7 be as careful as they can. I hope, also, that our coaches will use this as an opportunity to focus on helping these young people understand what really is at stake. That they’re going to have to do everything they can to keep COVID out of their team. I believe it will work.”
“Coaches,(this) is a normal year you inspire and instruct. For all of that, we are very grateful for what you do. But this year, it’s going to take more. It’s going to be inspiring them to keep COVID out. Keep it away from the team, away from the athletes. Success this year in sports is going to measured to some extent how well we can keep the COVID away from the team.”