The 2020 falls sports season in Minnesota will be very different.
The Minnesota State High School League voted to move volleyball and football games to the spring during the Aug. 4 Board of Directors meeting, while boys and girls soccer, boys and girls cross country, girls swimming and diving and girls tennis will begin on time this fall but with limitations.
Adapted soccer will be discussed in collaboration with the Minnesota Adapted Athletics Association and the MSHSL. No decision was made at the Aug. 4 meeting.
Moving football and volleyball
The board voted 13-5 to move football to the spring. The vote to hold football in the fall failed to pass by a 12-6 vote.
Volleyball initially had a 9-9 vote to move to the spring, but the vote to have it in the fall failed, 10-8. The board then voted 11-7 to take another vote on the option to hold volleyball in the spring. That motion was passed 11-7 on the second try.
Football and volleyball are allowed to hold practices in the fall despite not being able to have games until the spring.
Football will have a reduction of weeks in the spring and localized games. Volleyball will have a shorter schedule and have no scrimmages or invitations.
Fan attendance for both sports was not determined yet.
Other fall sports limited
Cross country, soccer, swimming and diving and tennis were approved for the fall on a 17-1 vote. But the seasons will be much more limited than usual.
The calendar and number of competitions will be scaled back for all sports, with postseason plans still up in the air.
Cross country will also limit the number of teams to three for events. Swimming and diving and tennis will limit the teams to two for events.
All of those sports will only have one to two matches/games per week.
Soccer will also be limited to one to two games per week with a 20 percent reduction in weeks and a 30 percent reduction in the number of overall competitions. The board voted 18-0 for a fall soccer season.
No fall sports teams will be allowed to have scrimmages, and spectators will not be allowed in designated learning centers, such as schools. Community center pools will abide by the Minnesota Department of Health rules.
Schedules for fall sports will also be localized to limit travel, and postseason play is still to be determined.
The board created a new four-season plan for the 2020-21 school year to accommodate the changes. The spring season will now go from mid-March to mid-May, and a new summer season will go from May until June.
No discussions were made yet on which spring sports might move from the spring to summer schedule or if any spring sports will move to the fall.
The board also approved spring teams that lost their 2020 season to be able to hold practices in the fall.
There will also be another special session at the Minnesota State Legislature on Aug. 12 where a bonding bill that includes a one-time provision of up to $500,000 of MSHSL Foundation funds will be considered to help offset the losses to the league from COVID-19.
The board also approved the cheer coach education requirement, which stats that head cheer coaches must complete the continuing education requirement and annual rules interpretation meeting. Also, all head cheerleading coaches that wish to have their sideline cheerleaders stunt will be required to complete the Cheer and Dance Safety Certification course.
The board voted to approve a transition to online souvenir state programs, effective this year, and the league will explore options for printed rosters at vendor stands during state tournament events.
The next board meeting will be Thursday, Oct. 1. There will also be a meeting Thursday, Dec. 3 this year. 2021 meetings will be Thursday, Feb. 4, Thursday, April 1 and Tuesday, June 1.