Apple Bowl 2019

FAN SUPPORT - Fans filled the stands at the 2019 Golden Apple Bowl football game at Analy High School in Sebastopol. Questions surrounding the fate of high school sports remain as the North Coast Section weighs its options for the 2020 fall season.  

One thing that was abundantly clear as the North Coast Section Board of Managers adjourned from their virtual spring meeting on May 22: there are just as many questions as answers with regard to the upcoming fall high school sports season. 

The meeting, led by NCS Commissioner Pat Cruickshank, was attended remotely by a wide variety of officials including NCS committee members, district superintendents, principals of member schools, the CIF executive director, league commissioners, athletic directors, school board personnel, members of the media and invited guests.

Among the many topics discussed were housekeeping items such as the proposed budget for 2020-21, increased student and general admission fees for sporting events, and an increase in fees for participating high school athletes.

Also discussed was a proposed amendment to the CIF guidelines for academic eligibility and player suspensions.

The elephant in the room was the topic of the 2020 fall season, which remains very much up in the air due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

With current state restrictions and guidelines dictating organized sports at all levels, there are no certainties going forward.

Depending on how the situation plays out, options for the fall high school sports season include: a delay to the start of the season; playing without fans in attendance; playing with strict social distancing guidelines in place; eliminating the postseason; or canceling the season entirely.

 “As commissioners we are prepared to work with the state department of education,” Cruickshank said as he adjourned the meeting. “We will be working on all contingencies and must be patient until there are further developments in the pandemic.”  

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