Bay District Schools pushes back the start of fall sports two weeks

Local Sports

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — Bay District Schools has decided to postpone fall sports for two weeks.

Bay District Schools met with area superintendents, high school principals and athletic directors this morning to decide on a date. They also met with health officials to get their take on when sports should begin.

“They felt that this two week delay would be best to make sure that they’ve got off to a good smooth start in all aspects with school as well as with athletics,” BDS Executive Director of Operations Josh Balkom.

Teams can begin practice on Sept. 7. However, when the first games will be played is still to be determined.

For football, it could be longer than just two weeks after the initial start date, which is when the FHSAA is allowing full games to be played.

Bay District Schools Athletic Director Kirk Harrell said he thinks more than likely football games will be played after three weeks of practice.

“Certainly after not playing spring football, no contact there, you have a lot of players that never played football before, they are taking on the sport. To throw them in the game that second week, that’s gonna be a challenge to do,” Harrell said.

“Maybe something like a jamboree or a classic with some adjusted schedules. Some coaches were throwing that idea out,” Harrell said. “But the FHSAA has said at the end of that second week of practice, you can play a full fledged football game. Our coaches are gonna look at that and have some more discussion on whether we think that’s advisable.”

Harrell said the big task for them now is to figure out scheduling and it won’t be easy for them.

“Going back and looking at our original schedules, contacting schools that were on our original schedules, seeing what their counties have decided, seeing where we can piece things together. Football will probably be the hardest to work out,” Harrell said.

They also have another obstacle to face, the state series. The FHSAA has given the option for schools to opt-out by September 18th. Officials said many teams in the area do want to compete in that this year.

“I think our coaches are excited that we have a plan to get back into action. Period. And so, I think that will be the next hurdle we have to cross is to make sure that we are putting ourselves in a position where we can get the correct number of games in prior to the state series,” Balkom said.

Teams can still continue with conditioning until the start of fall practice.

You can watch the full press conference with Bay District Schools here:

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