It was a day that most thought was coming, and on Wednesday, it became official.
Saskatoon’s high school sports have been cancelled for the fall. Those include cross country, soccer, volleyball and football.
“It impacts a lot of people. A lot of student-athletes, coaches, volunteers,” said Jud Heilman, with Saskatoon Secondary Schools Athletic Directorate (SSSAD).
“Everyone involved in delivering high school sport in Saskatoon. And obviously the decision wasn’t taken lightly. But it came down to the return-to-school plan of putting kids and cohorts in limited transactions, and to keep the school community safe (from COVID-19).”
“There are 13 high schools with 50-some kids playing football; there (are) a lot of kids that only come out because it’s in the building,” said Chad Palmer, head football coach at Aden Bowman High School.
“Their buddies bring them out. Those are the guys you have to feel for because it’s Grade 12, it’s their time to be the big guys, and they don’t get to play. And there is no opportunity for them to play later in football.”
But their chance to play football this fall may still be able to happen, just in a different form.
Saskatoon Minor Football has some ideas for boys and girls to still be able to take the gridiron.
“Grade 9 players can enroll in our (Kinsmen Football League) program that’s open to anybody in Grade 9 currently and then we are looking to launch a fall football academy for anybody in grades 10 through 12,” Saskatoon Minor Football executive director Brian Guebert said.
“And then for females, we traditionally run ‘rush’ high school female flag football in the spring. We didn’t do that this spring, but now that there has been the cancellation of female high school sports in the fall here, we are certainly looking at running a high school female league and hope to get that information in the next week as well.”
More information on these football opportunities for high school students is on the Saskatoon Minor Football website and registration for the KFL is already open.
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