The University Interscholastic League announced Tuesday that it is pushing back the start of the fall sports season for the state's two largest groups of high schools.
Based on the new guidelines from the UIL, high schools in classes 5A and 6A will not begin fall practice for football and volleyball until September 7. Volleyball can begin competition on September 14, while the first week of football will be delayed four weeks to September 24.
For 5A and 6A football, that means the regular season will now stretch into early December, with the state championships pushed into January 2021.
The calendar for high schools in 4A and below remains the same, with football beginning practices on August 3 and games beginning on August 27.
Modified UIL Activities Calendar & COVID-19 Guidelines for 2020-2021 School YearPress Release ⬇️https://t.co/sv3boFOD43Full COVID-19 Risk Mitigation Guidelines ⬇️https://t.co/o3qFFIZxrFMore COVID-19 Information ⬇️https://t.co/lE7fRyRbWY pic.twitter.com/vuWybpYVQ8
— Texas UIL (@uiltexas) July 21, 2020 "Our goal in releasing this plan is to provide a path forward for Texas students and schools," UIL Executive Director Dr. Charles Breithaupt said in a statement. "While understanding situations change and there will likely be interruptions that will require flexibility and patience, we are hopeful this plan allows students to participate in the education-based activities they love in a way that prioritizes safety and mitigates risk of COVID-19 spread."
UIL officials say their plan allows for local flexibility because COVID-19 affects every community differently. The plan encourages districts to plan for possible interruptions in order to complete their seasons.