High school sports, like so many events across the land suspended due to the COVID-19 outbreak, is on hiatus.
With schools closed through April 6, the Big 8 issued a statement that the earliest its member schools can begin conference competition will be April 20, about one month ahead of the scheduled start of the postseason.
In a statement passed by all of the athletic directors in the conference unanimously:
The Big 8 conference supports the fact that education based athletics is a privilege and not a right which gives us an added level of responsibility. You will see this in some of the information provided below. When we continue to have school, we may have the responsibility of making more restrictive decisions related to athletics and extra-curriculars.
We continue to get regular updates and guidance from Public Health and communicate with the WIAA to make sure we get correct information out as soon as we can. You can expect updates of timelines and information on Friday’s going forward related to Big 8 athletics.
When school is closed or buildings are closed, we will not hold practice, nor encourage students to group together, or practice without a coach. A program could be shared for individual training or workouts that can be completed individually. We would suggest using Google Classroom or another shared virtual space to do that and give student athletes resources when they're potentially not able to come to school or participate in athletics for an extended period of time.
At a minimum we could return to practices April 6th and Big 8 conference competitions April 20th, school-by-school decisions and non-conference competition expectations may vary. We will support all schools in their local decisions and follow the guidance of the WIAA.
The WIAA, nor most member schools, have given any indication of a timeline upon which high school sports may resume.