On Tuesday, August 4, the Colorado High School Activities Association (CHSAA) announced its 2020-2021 interscholastic athletics and activities calendar, following months of collaboration with Gov. Jared Polis, the CHSAA Resocialization Task Force, the Sports Medicine Advisory Committee, the state’s COVID-19 Response team, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, and the CHSAA Board of Directors and administrative staff.
“The health and safety of our student participants, coaches, officials and essential personnel, including volunteers is a primary concern for the return of interscholastic athletics and activities,” said CHSAA Commissioner Rhonda Blanford-Green. “We are very grateful for the state, health and educational leaders for their shared commitment of a return to these highly beneficial education programs when it is deemed safe for all school communities.”
Note that the resumption of all activities and athletics are subject to change based upon any changes to national, state or local guidelines.
The 2020-21 season will be played with a modified sport schedule due to the on-going global pandemic, creating four separate sports seasons during the school year.
Following a phone call with Gov. Jared Polis on Tuesday, Blanford-Green and CHSAA received a final response on the plan it submitted to the state’s COVID response team. This includes the clearance for cross country to begin this fall.
Due to the restrictive nature of the current state guidelines, and the ability to follow Colorado Department of Education requirements, all contact sports have been moved to a season which will commence later in the calendar, and allow for playoffs and culminating events without creating new conflicts.
“We would like to thank our member schools and our school communities for their patience as we worked through the many challenges to get to where we are today,” Blanford-Green said.
The modified calendar splits sports into four seasons, concluding in late June: A, B, C and D
Dates and plans for non-athletic activities continue to be formulated.
For specific dates and sports seasons, see the calendar below.
Each season is approximately seven weeks from start to finish. Sports will have their regular season competition limits reduced. The postseason for each sport will also be shortened, including the number of state qualifiers.
The following 2020 fall sports will begin as originally scheduled: boys golf began practice on Aug. 3, softball and boys tennis is set to begin on Aug. 10, and cross country on Aug. 12. According to the modified calendar, this is Season A.
The remaining traditional fall sports are unable to be played under current state health guidelines. These sports are field hockey, football, gymnastics, boys soccer, spirit, unified bowling and girls volleyball.
The sports played this fall will all be concluded by October 17. See the calendar below for specific dates.
In anticipation of data from the state which shows a likely resurgence of COVID-19 cases in late fall, there will be a participation moratorium from Oct. 18, 2020 to Jan. 3, 2021.
Sports in Season B will begin on Jan. 4, and conclude by March 6. These sports include: basketball, ice hockey, skiing, spirit, girls swimming and wrestling.
Season C, which begins on March 1 and concludes with championships by May 1, includes the following sports: field hockey, football, gymnastics, boys soccer, unified bowling and girls volleyball.
“I am very happy we will be having a season,” said Sterling volleyball coach Lisa Schumacher. “Even though it will be delayed, we will look forward to our season in the spring.”
Due to the specific equipment and safety rules around football, that sport will begin practice on Feb. 22, and conclude on May 8.
“I like that the creation of the seasons doesn’t disrupt any of the traditional season, no create new conflicts between sports,” said West Grand football coach Chris Brown, the state’s all-time winningest football coach. “And by knowing there is a season out there, it should help keep student-athlete academically engaged throughout the year.”
Said Ryan Goddard, the football coach at Pueblo South who is the football chair for the Colorado High School Coaches Association: “Certainly not the decision that we were hoping for but we are really looking forward to providing student-athletes with opportunities to compete in educational based activities in an unprecedented time. Allowing our kids to compete is what’s important, the date on the calendar is secondary.”
Said Dave Logan, the football coach at Cherry Creek who is set to be inducted in the NFHS Hall of Fame: “While I am disappointed we cannot play this fall, I appreciate the fact, given the parameters of engagement, that CHSAA has done everything they can do to allow all of our students in all of our extracurricular activities to have a season in the 2020-21 school year.”
The 2020-21 calendar will conclude with Season D. Sports include: baseball, girls golf, boys and girls lacrosse, girls soccer, girls tennis, boys swimming, track and field and boys volleyball. This season will begin with practice on April 26, and it concludes with the final championship on June 26.
Specific sport modifications, practice requirements, game requirements and procedures will be communicated by Thursday, including in bulletins that can be found on CHSAANow.com.