IHSA's Anderson acknowledges sports are on hold
The Illinois High School Association's board of directors meeting will be held Thursday without anyone in attendance from Gov. J.B. Pritzker's office and the department of public health.
"The IHSA office received confirmation Monday Deputy Gov. (Jesse) Ruiz and Dr. Ngozi Ezike are not available to attend the board of directors meeting Thursday," IHSA executive director Craig Anderson wrote in an email to athletic directors statewide Tuesday and obtained by the Daily Herald.
"I have responded to Deputy Gov. Ruiz asking for a date/time that we may be able to have a conversation regarding basketball and other future moderate/higher risk sports. The IHSA board of directors will be meeting on Thursday to consider next steps with basketball in addition to other agenda items."
In his daily news conference Tuesday, Pritzker said further discussion of IHSA sports at this time is "a moot issue. ... We are asking people not to have sports."
Anderson acknowledged the governor's statement.
"We're in a pause and I think one thing our board will emphasize is the hope that all non-school clubs and activities follow along," Anderson told the Daily Herald. "I'm hoping everyone will take this pause as (Pritzker) said we should. That's the only way we can get back to high school sports."
With an increasing number of school districts returning to full remote learning and pausing extracurricular activities, including sports, the fate of the 2020-21 winter sports season now hangs in the balance as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to rage across the country.
Practices in all winter sports were to have started Monday.
On Tuesday, Pritzker put Tier 3 mitigations in place, effective at 12:01 a.m. Friday.
Those mitigations for sports include:
• Pause all indoor group sporting and recreational activities including youth and adult recreational sports; individual training may remain (with facility reservation).
• (Organized group recreational activities includes) park districts and travel leagues.
• Outdoor sports and recreation allowed.
• Participant groups and practices outdoors limited to 10 persons or less with social distancing.
• Face coverings required for all activities at all times.
• Locker rooms should be closed.