CIAC Offers Hope for a Spring Football Season

On Tuesday the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference (CIAC), which canceled fall full contact football per the Dept of Health recommendations, announced Tuesday an alternative spring season from late February to mid April for full contact 11×11 football.

CIAC warned that without interscholastic options, private pay-to-play leagues would likely form, taking some of the regulation control away from school districts and removing opportunities for players who can’t pay the fees. They also warned of overuse injuries.

“The CIAC is aware of independent football teams that are forming to offer a limited number of high school aged players a full contact fall league. The CIAC does not endorse play in such in league,” CIAC said in their statement on Tuesday.

CIAC executive director Glenn Lungarini said football would play one scrimmage and a maximum fives games in the alternative spring season. There would be no post season.

The CIAC said they were open to considering the alternative spring season not only for football, but for any other sports that don’t complete at least 40% of their games during the regularly scheduled fall season.

The alternative season would still be subject to Covid-19 metrics.

Winter and spring season dates would be adjusted to make room for the alternative season and minimize impact to winter and spring sports.

“With the establishment of a second semester alternative season in which full contact 11v11 football can be played, any football activity outside of that season would be considered out-of-season,” the CIAC said in their statement Tuesday.

The Board of Control waived the out-of-season rule for football coaches on a limited basis, so teams can participate in low to moderate risk school-based activities until Nov 21.

The following dates were suggested for the alternative season, with the understanding that all plans remain fluid.

Conditioning—February 22 –February 26
First day of Full Pads (Football only)—February 27
Scrimmage Dates—March 6 and March 12 or 13
First date of special season contests – March 19
Last date of special season contests – April 17

On Sept 14, Governor Lamont suggested a spring season, but noted the final decision was down to the CIAC.

“You may say, what’s the difference? Why put it off until spring? What’s going to be different? I think it could be a world of difference where it’s much safer. Not only are we through the risk of the colleges, but we’re also through the bulk of the flu season. Hopefully we’ll have that five minute Abbott Lab test. Hopefully we’ll have some new therapies that are in the offing.”

Governor Ned Lamont, Monday, Sept 14, 2020

“I think it’s reasonable to assume we’ll be in a much better position to prevent, stem and hold down Covid in February than we are in September,” Lamont added.

See also:

DPH Not Convinced of New CIAC Football Strategies; Lamont Says Safer to Put Season off Til February Sept 14, 2020