Fall sports updates

With the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, many questions are still left unanswered regarding campus athletics.


Image from Highschoolfootballamerica.com

With the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, many questions are still left unanswered regarding campus athletics. Based on the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) Southern Section website, plans are subject to change depending on the conditions. However, there is some idea of what athletics may look like, including how sports seasons will be structured and when the projected first games will be.

Sports have been divided into two seasons: fall and spring, with traditionally winter sports being combined with the two seasons, according to the CIF Southern Section commissioner Rob Wigod. Most fall sports will have their first game in December or January, based on the current released timeline, and Boys Volleyball is scheduled to have the first official contest on Dec. 12. 

“The biggest upcoming challenge will be the need of seventeen spring sports to share facilities. We are more than fortunate than most high schools but we will all need to be flexible,” assistant athletic director Travis Haynes said. “Our main goal is still to utilize athletics to promote excellent character through discipline, teamwork and competition. In my opinion, this process has convinced us that being together is important.”

Over the summer, all camps were cancelled per the California Department of Public Health’s orders. Currently, athletics are operating under a temporary extension of summer periods, meaning practices will be approved by site principals. 

Athletic camps have slowly begun, with a break due to the air quality from recent wildfires, with sports including cheer, basketball, volleyball, football, water polo, soccer and baseball practicing socially distanced. Irvine Unified principals have charged athletic directors and trainers to follow the Orange Country Health Department guidelines regarding practice, and administrators are meeting regularly to ensure sport camps are held safely and consistently. Many teams that cannot practice safely in-person have opted to do Zoom workouts together.

“Wrestling is really hard to practice socially distanced because it’s a contact sport,” senior varsity wrestler Daniel Lam said. “But to accommodate for that we’ve been doing Zoom conditioning, which is definitely better than sitting around and not doing anything – at least we can stay in shape while we’re waiting for practice to start.”

Much of our fall spirit activities centered around athletics have also been postponed or cancelled. But, Associated Student Body (ASB) is prepared to lead the student body once sports do begin in the winter. 

“We will still show spirit like we always do and come back better than ever,” said ASB Commissioner of Spirit Sawyer Spivey. “There is a lot of uncertainty as of right now but we will know more as we get closer to season. Spirit activity-wise we are trying to plan more activities students can do at home as well as in school.”

For more updates on athletics, go to http://cifss.org/press-releases/