High School Sports

Oct. 5 update: How each state is handling high school football this fall

Another state has flipped its plan and will play football this fall.

Maryland, which previously announced there would be no fall sports in 2020, announced that it now will be up to each school district in the state to decide if it will play high school football this fall.

The plan is to begin practices Oct. 7 with the first games slated for Oct. 27.

Some school districts, particularly in the western part of the state, say they will begin fall sports practices on Oct. 7. Others are taking the matter under consideration, and other still, particularly around Baltimore, have reiterated their plan to delay sports until 2021.

New Jersey kicked off its fall football season last weekend, with a couple of games that had to be postponed or rescheduled because of COVID-19 outbreaks.

Arizona also opened its season, but two large school districts in and around Phoenix have not yet met mandated metrics to begin playing football.

This upcoming week, Colorado, Louisiana and Minnesota are expected to begin playing.

So here’s where the map stands on Oct. 5. We’ve broken states up into three basic categories: Green (30 states), Yellow (5 states) and Red (15 states, plus the District of Columbia).

Green indicates that the high school football season has started in some section of that state. Deep green (25 states) indicates most, if not all, of the state has begun playing, although some states (Ohio, Kansas, Iowa) have abbreviated or altered their seasons from normal. Medium green states (three states) are playing football in most of the state, but significant pockets of the state still have not started or is being postponed week-to-week. And light green (two states) are states where football is widely divided in play, with at least 15 percent of the state not playing this fall.

Yellow states indicate that football has not started, but there is still a plan for fall prep football in some form.

And red states mean there will be no fall tackle football. Vermont will replace tackle football with 7-on-7 touch this fall. Rhode Island won’t play tackle football, with no plan for a season in the spring. The remainder have a plan to play football in 2021.

Here’s a breakdown about how each of the 50 states, plus the District of Columbia, are handling the high school football season, as updated on Oct. 5. We will update this every week.

ALABAMA: Season has started.

ALASKA: Season has started.

ARIZONA: Season opened on Oct. 1 but districts in and around Phoenix have not yet met the metrics to begin play.

ARKANSAS: Season has started.

CALIFORNIA: Delayed to 2021.

COLORADO: CHSAA reversed earlier decision to reaffirm earlier decision to move football to spring. About 79 percent of schools in state will open fall season on Oct. 8. The rest will play in the spring.

CONNECTICUT: Delayed to 2021.

DELAWARE: State Board of Education voted 4-3 to approve DIAA decision to bring back fall sports, including football. Games scheduled to begin Oct. 23.

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA: Delayed to 2021.

FLORIDA: Season has started..

GEORGIA: Season has started.

HAWAII: Delayed to 2021.

IDAHO: Season has started.

ILLINOIS: Delayed to 2021

INDIANA: Season has started

IOWA: Season has started, but will be shortened to seven-game regular season.

KANSAS: Season has started

KENTUCKY: Season has started.

LOUISIANA: Start of season delayed six weeks to Oct. 8.

MAINE: Delayed to 2021.

MARYLAND: Reversed earlier decision to move football to 2021 and is now allowing each district to make its own determination. Some have opted to play in the fall, others are discussing the matter and while others remain committed to playing in the spring.

MASSACHUSETTS: Delayed to 2021.

MICHIGAN: Season has started.

MINNESOTA: Previously opted to delay to 2021. MHSAA voted to play football in the fall. Games will start Oct. 9.

MISSISSIPPI: Season has started.

MISSOURI: Season has started, but schools in and around St. Louis have not yet started, but officials announced a plan for football to begin to be played.

MONTANA: Season has started.

NEBRASKA: Season has started.

NEVADA: Delayed to 2021.

NEW HAMPSHIRE: Season has started.

NEW JERSEY: Season started on Oct. 1.

NEW MEXICO: Delayed to 2021.

NEW YORK: Delayed to 2021.

NORTH CAROLINA: Delayed to 2021.

NORTH DAKOTA: Season has started.

OHIO: Season has started, but state will play a condensed schedule that would start postseason on Oct. 9.

OKLAHOMA: Season has started.

OREGON: Delayed to 2021.

PENNSYLVANIA: State widely divided. Parts of the state opened season on Sept. 11. Other parts will open on Oct. 2. About 15 percent of the state has decided to delay until spring.

RHODE ISLAND: No fall football. Could be moved to 2021.

SOUTH CAROLINA: Season has started.

SOUTH DAKOTA: Season has started.

TENNESSEE: Season has started.

TEXAS: Season has started.

UTAH: Season has started.

VERMONT: Opted to cancel fall tackle football season and replace it with 7-on-7 touch football. Teams will play twice a week between Sept. 25 and Oct. 24.

VIRGINIA: Delayed until 2021.

WASHINGTON: Delayed until 2021.

WEST VIRGINIA: Season started Sept. 4. However, COVID restrictions continues to cancel patches of game each week. This upcoming week 18 games have been scrubbed.

WISCONSIN: Season started on Sept. 25 for some. However, one-third of the state’s teams have opted not to play in the fall and will play next spring.

WYOMING: Season has started.

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