NJSIAA remains hopeful a spring sports season can be salvaged
The New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association issued a statement Monday night regarding the status of the spring season, which has currently been delayed indefinitely.
"There will be no interscholastic athletic competition until schools reopen," the NJSIAA said in its statement. "When they do, the NJSIAA will make every effort to take advantage of whatever part of the spring sports season remains, including holding championships. The NJSIAA remains committed to providing student-athletes as many opportunities as possible"
On Monday, March 16, Gov. Phil Murphy issued Executive Order 104, which required all pre-kindergarten, K-12 schools and higher education institutions in the state to close because of the ongoing novel coronavirus threat beginning on Wednesday, March 18. All schools will remain closed while the order remains in effect.
The status of the state tournaments has not been decided but the NJSIAA stated its goal is to have state championships in some form if and when schools are reopened.
"A decision on NJSIAA State Championships for spring sports has not been made. Our goal is to provide championship opportunities if schools are reopened," the statement read. "If we cannot accommodate the traditional postseason tournament structure, we will look at other options and other opportunities. The health, safety and welfare of student-athletes will always be our top priority."
The NJSIAA reiterated that during the government-mandated statewide shutdown of schools, no NJSIAA member school, district or coach may conduct practices, scrimmages or games.
"This is a mandatory, no-contact period for all coaches and student-athletes," the statement read.
This includes any such event organized by a parent, captain or other student-athlete.
The NJSIAA requires six days of practice and one day of rest before the first regular-season game, and that rule will remain in effect. Boys and girls golf are not considered 'strenuous sports' and are not subject to the rule, however.
The transfer eligibility rules remain the same for those who were subject to the 30-day transfer rule - eligible 31 days from the original start of the season (March 25 for lacrosse and April 1 for all other sports).
Managing editor Bob Badders can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @Bob_Badders. Like Shore Sports Network on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube channel for all the latest video highlights.