Tag: Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference

Four New England States Will Play High School Football This Fall

Connecticut becomes the fourth New England state to allow high school football this fall. (PHOTO COURTESY: Visualhunt.com)

By Matt Noonan 

The state of Connecticut became the fourth New England state to greenlight fall sports this afternoon, including football, despite the ongoing coronavirus (Covid-19).

Today’s announcement from the nutmeg state follows a similar notification from Jay Nichols, who is the executive director for the Vermont Principals’ Association (VPA), during Governor Phil Scott‘s press conference on Monday. But unlike Vermont, which plans to play seven-on-seven football this year, Connecticut will play tackle football.

Maine and New Hampshire will also allow tackle football to be played this fall, but those plans like Connecticut’s could change pending how each state continues to contain the virus.

Prior to this afternoon’s announcement regarding plans for fall sports, there seemed to be some momentum from the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference (CIAC) football committee to move the upcoming season to next February. But that plan was nixed after the organization heard from its various “stakeholders group” during today’s meeting.

“The major decisions (in deciding to go ahead with fall sports) was hearing from all of our stakeholder groups today,” said Glenn Lungarini, who is the executive director of the CIAC.

“We had an opportunity to continue to collaborate with all of our education stakeholders and hear directly from our medical advisory group, and at this point, they strongly feel that the COVID-metrics in Connecticut have not changed from when we approved the plan on July 30. (We believe) that it is safe to play all sports as scheduled right now with the mitigating factors that we have in place, including football.”

According to the CIAC website, high school football practices can begin as soon as next Monday, August 17 in cohorts of 15. Full team practices can start Friday, September 11 followed by scrimmages one week later (September 18).

The CIAC’s 2020 football season will start on Thursday, September 24 with teams being permitted to play a maximum of six contests. The final date for all teams to compete is Friday, October 30.

Following the conclusion of the 2020 regular season, the CIAC will provide its programs with a postseason from Monday, November 2 to Sunday, November 15.

High School Football Could Be Moved To Next Spring In Connecticut

High school football in Connecticut could be moved from the fall to next spring. (PHOTO COURTESY: Visualhunt.com)

By Matt Noonan 

A big announcement is coming later today from the nutmeg state regarding plans for the upcoming fall high school sports season.

The Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference (CIAC) board of control will be meeting this afternoon – 2 p.m., to be exact – to review recommendations by the various sports committees to determine if it is safe to conduct athletic events during the ongoing coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

According to Shawn McFarland of the Hartford Courant, the CIAC could make some “modifications” to the upcoming fall season, including moving sports such as football to next spring to possibly holding virtual swim meets.

Moving football to next spring seems to be a possibility as nine of ten members of the sport’s committee voted to pushback the start of the season to next February instead of kicking-off the current season in September.

As of this morning, the 2020 CIAC football season, which will consist of six regular-season contests, will kick off Wednesday, September 23.

Will We Really See High School Football In New England This Fall?

High School football normally begins in August, but

By Matt Noonan 

At first, the debate was about the colleges: will we actually see a college football season this fall?

That question is still being debated, especially here in Massachusetts with two local teams – Boston College and the University of Massachusetts – planning to play games this fall, despite the ongoing coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

But while we anxiously await to see if either team or any college does play football this fall, the attention is slowly shifting to both local and national high school programs that seem eager, hopeful – and dare I say optimistic? – for a season to actually occur.

Here in New England, each state’s organization seems to have plans in place for their student-athletes to return to the playing field, pending it is safe to do so, of course. And if teams are able to return to the gridiron then that would open the door for the possibility of some games to be played. But don’t expect a lot of games to occur this fall – maybe we see one or two or possibly four?  

And pending how many games are played, then comes the next question: can we actually have a postseason?

My answer: I doubt it.

The thought of high school football or any sport being played during a pandemic just seems crazy unless you are a professional league. And it also doesn’t seem safe, either.

This topic was discussed on today’s Noontime Sports Podcast (listen to the show on Apple Podcast and Spotify) with Shawn McFarland of the Hartford Courant. I highly recommend you listen, as well as subscribe to our show, too. 

Shawn provided some great insight into if and how high school sports could be played, specifically in Connecticut, which has a much lower transmission rate than we do here in Massachusetts. But as Shawn and I both know, and so does the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference (CIAC), the situation is fluid and the virus could derail plans for not just high school football games and practices, but also the start of the upcoming school year.

I know so many of our fans and friends would like to see high school football games played this fall, but I don’t think it is feasible. And I certainly don’t think it is safe.

While you may think I am being too much of a worrywart or cautious (in this post), I believe our focus should be on keeping everyone safe, including teachers, principals, coaches, and yes, athletic directors, too.

I also believe it is not possible to play high school sports, especially if students are not in the classroom.  No one seems to know if and how a student could play a sport if their school year begins remotely – does anyone know? And if sports are allowed to occur in say mid-to-late September, then we should also allow other extracurricular activities,  too, such as jazz band, choir, and theatre.

We know these are unprecedented times and everyone is searching for some sense of normalcy, but risking the lives of not just our student-athletes, coaches, officials, but also community members, families, and friends doesn’t seem worth it.

High school sports – yes, an essential part of each community – will return one day, but for now, I believe it is best to stay on the sidelines for a few more months and wait until it is truly safe to play games again.

MIAA, RIIL Cancels Spring Sports

Four New England states have canceled high school spring sports. (VISUALHUNT.com)

By Matt Noonan 

Both Massachusetts and Rhode Island joined Maine and New Hampshire by canceling its state’s spring high school sports season this afternoon.

The Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) and Rhode Island Interscholastic League (RIIL) both shared this news on their respective Twitter accounts.

Both states are abiding by the advice of Governors Charlie Baker and Gina Raimondo, who have ordered both Massachusetts and Rhode Island to conclude their respective academic schools years online, not in-person.

Connecticut has not canceled its spring sports season, but the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference (CIAC) announced yesterday they will “not run any spring state championship events.” The CIAC could, however, have a regular-season in June, but that would only occur if schools reopen. Connecticut is not scheduled to reopen until May 20.

The Vermont Principals’ Association (VPA) will make an announcement regarding its spring sports season on Thursday, April 30.

Maine and New Hampshire announced the cancelations of its states’ spring sports season earlier this month.

Daily Noontime: Tuesday, March 31st, 2020


By Matt Noonan | @NoontimeNation 

Welcome to Tuesday, everyone – how is everyone doing?

From a quick glance outside the window, it appears as if the sun is shining, which is something positive to report, right?

Yes, it will be a bit cold today, so if you do wander out of your home, condo or apartment (or wherever you’re hunkering down these days), please bundle up and wear an extra hat.

And now, let’s get to some news (and links) to start your day!

Noontime’s Headlines for Tuesday, March 31st, 2020 

Noontime’s Recent Links!

On this Date in History 

  • 1973: Bobby Orr becomes the first player in NHL history to record 100 points in four-straight seasons.
  • 1990: Joe Sakic becomes the youngest player in NHL history to record 100 points when he scored a goal in a 3-2 loss to the Hartford Whalers.
  • 1994: The Chicago White Sox assigned former NBA (and Chicago Bulls) superstar Michael Jordan to their Class AA affiliate the Birmingham Barons.
  • 1997: Arizona beat Kentucky, 84-79 (OT), in the 59th NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship to secure the program’s first national title.
  • 2002: The University of Connecticut women’s basketball captured the 21st NCAA Championship – the Huskies beat Oklahoma, 82-70, and finished their season 39-0.
  • 2002: Andre Agassi won his 700th career match by beating Roger Federer in the Nasdaq-100 Open in Florida.