Topsy turvey high school sports schedules in COVID era

Only CHSAA activities with no changes are student leadership and music activities

Published on August 6, 2020

by Mark Craddock

COLORADO — High school football, volleyball and basketball in February? Softball, tennis and golf in the fall? Baseball extending into late June?

In a world turned topsy-turvy by the COVID-19 pandemic, when even the status of school openings is still up in the air in many districts, it is little wonder the upheaval would find its way to prep sports fields and bleachers across the state.

The Colorado High School Activities Association (CHSAA)  released its calendar of activities for the coming year, rife with changes to conform with state restrictions and guidelines.

In broad strokes, the calendar is built around four seasons spread across the academic year, with many of the activities shuffled from their traditional seasons.

In “season A,” the traditional fall sports season, only cross country, boys’ golf, boys’ tennis and softball teams will see competition.

Football, in many areas the highlight of high school fall sports — and the anchor of most schools’ homecoming activities — will not see its first practices until Feb. 22, 2021, with games slated to begin March 4. Girls’ volleyball, another traditional fall sport, will be delayed until March 1.

Both sports are relegated to the late-winter “season C.”

The football season will be limited to seven games, with championships tentatively scheduled for May 8. For the volleyball teams, the season will see a maximum of 16 games, with a tentative state tourney date of May 1.

Boys’ and girls’ basketball, a “season B” sport in the CHSAA calendar, will get underway Jan. 1, closer to its normal timetable. Schools from 1A to 3A can play a 13-game schedule, while 4A and 5A schools get three additional games. Their championships will tentatively be held March 6.

Wrestling will also be a “season B” sport, with first competitions coming Jan. 7. Teams may participate in seven dual meets and a cumulative seven days worth of tournament action. The state championship is tentatively scheduled for March 6.

Baseball season will begin April 29. c1A teams will be limited to 13 games, while 2A-5A teams may schedule 16. The championship is tentatively set for June 26.

There will be no changes to the CHSAA sanctioned student leadership and music activities. Both will follow typical schedules for practices and competitions.