By the Kentucky High School Athletic Association
With the announcement Monday of the recommended closure of all K-12 schools to in-person instruction throughout Kentucky for the remainder of the school year, the KHSAA Board of Control on Tuesday approved the Commissioner’s recommendation and announcement by unanimous vote that the 2020 state basketball tournaments will not be resumed, while also approving the cancellation of all regular-season practices and contests as well as all postseason tournament championship events for all spring sports and sport-activities for the 2019-20 school year.
This means the termination of the Archery, Bass Fishing, Esports, Baseball, Softball, Tennis, and Track & Field seasons. This will also result in the continuance of all provisions of the Coronavirus Dead Period provisions until further notice to the member schools from the Commissioner.
The KHSAA has worked closely and continuously with the Governor of our beloved Commonwealth, representatives of the Department of Public Health, Interim Commissioner Kevin Brown and the Kentucky Department of Education, as well our member schools and their superintendents, state and local authorities, and under the guidance of best practices distributed by the CDC since the start of the COVID-19 virus outbreak.
“This is without question the most challenging period I have seen or faced in thirty-six years in this office,” stated KHSAA Commissioner Julian Tackett. “This impacts so many people, but in the end, is in the best interest of public health. We have been especially concerned with the graduating class of 2020, those seniors who put so much into their athletic participation opportunities hoping for one last time to shine before the home crowds or at postseason events. We know for the vast majority of them, their future plans are already laid out, with college and career final preparation as their next chapter. We are also keenly aware that per almost all metrics, 94% of the students who participate in high school sports and sport-activities are involved in their last organized competition while in high school, as the lion’s share of participants will not play beyond this level. In the end, however, the health and safety of all individuals, participants, coaches, and spectators, is much more important than the various interscholastic activities.”
The Board and staff will continue discussions over the coming weeks to attempt to address issues related to the fall season.
“It is far too early in this process and battle against this virus to place an absolute planned schedule or dates out there,” stated Commissioner Tackett. “We remain optimistic about the fall season, even if it isn’t exactly per normal, but we will adhere to the guidance of both federal and state health officials, as well as our own Department of Education and the Governor’s office in planning our next steps in the coming weeks and months.”
The Association continues to remind its member schools and the general public to follow the guidance of the governor and the Kentucky Department of Public Health via http://kycovid19.ky.gov/.