The Hockey East Announces Plans For 2020-21 Season

Hockey East Pre-Season Coaches Poll By Matt Noonan

The Hockey East Association announced this morning its intention to play games this year, despite the ongoing coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

When exactly the 2020-21 season will begin for both its men and women’s members remains an unknown. But, according to today’s release, “a new start date and specifics of regular-season competition, will be released at a later date.”

Like most conferences and leagues that have expressed interest in providing its student-athletes with some competition this upcoming school year, the Hockey East admitted they will confront more challenges as they inch closer to a new season. And as expected, the league – again, like others – plans to put health and safety first, along with physical and mental health, too.

More will be added to this blog post as the day progresses, so please stay tuned! 

Daily Noontime: NFL Players Are Opting Out For The 2020 Season

DNJuly282020

By NoontimeSports.com 

It’s Tuesday – how is everyone doing?

Yesterday was a crazy day – did you hear the news about members of the Miami Marlins testing positive for the coronavirus (Covid-19)?

Also, the New York Yankees‘ fourth game of the season against the Philadelphia Phillies was postponed, which is not good news for Major League Baseball (MLB).

Here is the latest from the baseball world from ESPN’s Jeff Passan and Jessica Mendoza (below!):

While it seems like baseball is in a world of hurt, various members of the National Football League (NFL) are beginning to opt-out for the upcoming season.

We learned this morning that Dont’a Hightower of the New England Patriots has decided to stay on the sidelines this fall. Hightower recently became a father and is the fifth member of the Patriots to opt-out for the upcoming season.

Here is the current list of Patriots players that won’t be playing this year:

  • Dont’a Hightower (linebacker)
  • Marcus Cannon (offensive tackle)
  • Danny Vitale (fullback)
  • Najee Toran (guard)
  • Brandon Bolden (running back/special teams)

Could we see more players from our hometown Patriots decide to not play this fall due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic?

Brandon Bolden also made headlines this morning, while other members of the league, including Maurice Canady of the Dallas Cowboys, won’t play this year.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell seems bullish on playing a “complete” season this year, despite recent upticks in coronavirus cases, but what exactly is does complete mean?

Switching gears (for a moment!), Los Angeles Chargers general manager Tom Telesco admitted that the league’s biggest opponent in 2020 is Covid-19.

And just because we like to share positive news – it is a great way to wrap-up a ‘Daily Noontime,’ right? – here is New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick (below) talking about his love for lacrosse, as well as football!

Should MLB Pause Or Stop The 2020 Season?

hi-res-a3e91b87db11221af1356edbbb56bdbc_crop_north

Should Major League Baseball (MLB) Commissioner Rob Manfred consider ending the 2020 season? (PHOTO COURTESY: Lynne Sladky/Associated Press)

By Matt Noonan

Rob Manfred might want to consider pressing the pause button or perhaps shutting down the 2020 Major League Baseball (MLB) season.

With today’s news of 14 members of the Miami Marlins testing positive for the coronavirus (Covid-19), perhaps this is a sign that maybe, just maybe, traveling to play baseball during a pandemic this summer is not something we should do.

The 2020 season – a short, 60-game sprint – began last week with some bad news when  Juan Soto, an outfielder for the Washington Nationals, tested positive prior to his team’s initial contest against the New York Yankees. Soto recently tested negative but needs an additional negative result before returning to the diamond.

Let’s hope Soto does test negative (again), so we can see him back on the field either later this week or next month.

But while we anxiously await word of Soto’s next test, it just seems likely that we will learn of more players, along with coaches and staff members that will test positive for the virus as the season progresses. The United State of America has recorded more than four million cases of Covid-19, while 1.3 million individuals have recovered

Baseball, unlike other sports that have restarted, is not playing in a “bubble,” so the chances of players, coaches, and staff members testing positive for the virus seems more likely from staying in hotels to traveling to various ballparks on planes and busses.

No matter what happens, Manfred, along with the owners, coaches, and players knew they were taking a risk with playing games during a pandemic, but is it worth the risk continuing to play with cases on the rise in various states across the country, including here in Massachusetts?

 

Where Things Stand With High School Fall Sports

HSFBWEBSOCIAL072120

Various states are beginning to announce plans for the upcoming high school fall sports season. (PHOTO: Matt Noonan/NoontimeSports.com)

By Matt Noonan

For the past few months, high school sports have been at a standstill due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. But with a new school year on the horizon, many are beginning to wonder if and when high school sports will resume, not just here in Massachusetts, but in other parts of the country.

As of now, there are a few states planning to keep high school sports on the sidelines until 2021, while others such as Florida and Georgia will allow preseason practices to begin as soon as next Monday, July 27.

Yesterday, the California Interscholastic Federation announced plans to delay the start of its fall sports season until December, but it is possible games and practices could be shifted to next January due to a recent uptick in coronavirus cases.

In Texas, some teams will start their preseason workouts in two weeks – that would be Monday, August 3, to be exact – while two conferences (5A and 6A) won’t be allowed to practice until Monday, September 7.

Here in Massachusetts, the hope for a high school sports season hinges on future announcements from both the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) and the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA).

Pending Massachusetts does allow high school sports to be played this year, the official start date for all athletic programs would be Monday, September 14. The date, which was proposed by the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) Covid-19 Task Force, was approved by the organization’s Board of Directors during this afternoon’s virtual meeting. 

As for what sports will be allowed to play this fall in Massachusetts? That remains an unknown, but guidelines for extracurricular activities, including sports should become available by early August. Those plans will also include guidance for other activities like choir and musical theatre.

Similar to Massachusetts, Maine won’t begin its fall sports season until Tuesday, September 8 following today’s decision by the Maine Principals’ Association (MPA). Games can begin 10 days later, but not before 3 p.m. 

Daily Noontime: Tuesday, July 21, 2020

By NoontimeSports.com

Good morning. And welcome to Tuesday, everyone. 

We have a few things to get to this morning, beginning with some big news from California yesterday regarding the state postponing the start of its upcoming high school football season to December

Maybe the season will be punted to next January? That could happen, but it all depends on how things shake out with the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

California went from “bending the curve” to becoming a hotspot, so pushing back the start of fall sport was the right decison (in our opinion).

According to CBS Sports, three states have postponed the start date of its high school football season until January 2021, while eight states, including New Jersey plan to delay the start of their respective seasons until later this year.

Georgia will begin playing high school football on Friday, September 4, according to Fred Kalil, who is a reporter in Atlanta. The Georgia High School Association (GHSA) voted “unanimously” to provide all of its teams with a 10 game season, along with a five-week playoff.

It seems like high school sports will start on time in Florida as the Florida High School Athletic Association Board of Trustees decided to go against the organization’s medical advisory, which reccomended pushing back the start of football and volleyball.

Here in New England, there is still a lot of unknowns about the upcoming high school football season, but we should know more later today, as well as over the next few days and weeks. A new school year is on the horizon and yesterday’s decision by California to postpone the start of high school football, along with other fall sports could impact other states to do the same.