The Alabama High School Athletic Association released details Thursday afternoon on what the fall athletic season might look like.
Among the big changes were information about forfeited games and the number of players allowed to attend.
“As we all realize, there’s not a one size fits all solution to this health conundrum,” AHSAA Executive Director Steve Savarese said. “But I’m thankful to the board for providing the flexibility necessary for students to have some semblance of fall activities.”
The plan is for the season to start on time and plan for a full season, Savarese said, because of the uncertainty of the future and to get as many games as possible played in case the pandemic cuts the season short.
Schools will be the decision makers on whether they play a particular contest, officials said. In the event that a school forfeits a game, that forfeiture will be evaluated by AHSAA at a later time.
Schools also will decide who and how many people are allowed at a game, with equal access required for the visiting team. The AHSAA is encouraging systems to allow band and cheer as well.
In football, the player’s box will be extended to between the 10 yard lines. That does not include the coach’s box. Timeouts will be a maximum of two minutes, and only one captain will be allowed per team for the pregame coin toss.
Savarese said administrators would be encouraged to find a place for cheerleaders and band because of the player box extension.
He also said everyone is encouraged to wear masks.
Fan attendance will also be up to local schools, Savarese said.
Currently, Savarese said the AHSAA is planning for a full schedule, but he said if there is another shutdown due to COVID-19, the fall sports season will end.