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Home Sports High School Sports How we got here: A timeline CT high school sports’ 2020 summer...

How we got here: A timeline CT high school sports’ 2020 summer of discontent

Scenes from Connecticut High School Sports’ summer of discontent. At top, Danbury athletes protest a pause in conditioning activities in late August; Bottom, left to right: Athletes listen during a protest at CIAC headquarters in August; CIAC executive Director Glenn Lungarini during an August 26 press conference; DPH acting commissioner Sr. Diedre Gifford; Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel; Dr. Anthony Fauci during various press conferences with CT Gov. Ned Lamont. (Hearst Connecticut Media)

Over the past four months the CIAC’s decision on whether or not football would be played this fall has been changed a handful of times.

We take a look back at the important dates and stories from the past four months.

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Connecticut becomes the last state to cancel spring athletics after being the first state to call off winter sports on March 10.

Football’s start date is set for Aug. 17 with other sports to follow 10 days later, but CIAC executive director Glenn Lungarini concedes that fall sports may not start on time.

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The CIAC releases guidelines for a return to sports, with in-person outdoor conditioning allowed beginning on July 6.

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The Founders League, a member of the New England Preparatory School Athletic Council association situated mainly in Connecticut, cancels fall sports. 

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The Fairchester Athletic Association, another NEPSAC league with a majority of schools in Connecticut, cancels conference play for fall sports

The NEPSAC announces it will not hold fall tournaments the following day.

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Asked at Gov. Ned Lamont’s daily press briefing if football can be played this fall, Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel replies, “I don’t think so.”

Meanwhile, the New England Preparatory School Athletic Council cancels its fall tournaments.

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The CIAC releases a plan for fall sports, leading up to first games on Sept. 24. The plan includes regional schedules and a limited postseason “experience.”

Conditioning continues, with first practices remaining set for Aug. 17 (football) and Aug. 27 (all other sports).

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Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and a member of the White House’s coronavirus task force, appearing at Gov. Ned Lamont’s press conference said that the return of sports will hinge on several issues.

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New Canaan senior co-captains Drew Guida (4) and Matt Rigione (76) help lead the Rams’ football team onto the field for the annual Turkey Bowl against Darien at Darien High School on Thursday, Nov. 28, 2019

The CIAC football committee votes to recommend moving the season to the spring. The girls volleyball committee recommends sticking with the fall.

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The CIAC Board of Control votes to go ahead with fall sports as planned. The decision is made without receiving a requested position from the Connecticut Department of Health.

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The official position of the Connecticut’s Department of Public Health arrives: Their letter to CIAC recommends football and girls volleyball be moved to the spring.

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New Haven, Connecticut – Friday, October 11, 2019: Hillhouse H.S. football of New Haven vs. Harding H.S. of Bridgeport Friday at Bowen Field in New Haven. Harding H.S. defeated Hillhouse H.S. 36-12.

The CIAC pauses conditioning activities and postpones its Aug. 17 football start date to review the DPH recommendations.

New Haven’s Department of Health bans games and practices for several fall sports, and Bridgeport’s school administration postpones football and girls volleyball.

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(File)

The Region 14 board of education votes to postpone fall sports for Nonnewaug High School.

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The CIAC asks DPH to allow teams to resume conditioning as the two sides continue discussion.

Athletes from across the state, led by Southington quarterback Brady Lafferty, meet with CIAC executive director Glenn Lungarini outside CIAC headquarters in Cheshire to make a plea for the return to the fields in 2020.

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In a letter to the CIAC, DPH recommends outdoor volleyball and 7-on-7 football as options to reduce the risk of those sports.

The sides agree that in-person conditioning will resume the next day, and the CIAC says practices will begin Aug. 29. The CIAC says that a sport canceled in the fall will not be rescheduled.

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Conditioning resumes, though some schools remain off the field, like Danbury because of a jump in positive COVID-19 tests in the city.

Danbury athletes protest the decision at City Hall a day later.

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Bloomfield QB Daron Bryden (2) looks downfield for a receiver during the annual Grip It and Rip It football tournament in New Canaan on Saturday, July 13, 2019.

Bloomfield all-state quarterback Daron Bryden announces he has moved to Oklahoma for his senior year, the most prominent athlete yet to leave the state.

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The CIAC releases an updated plan for the fall, now targeting Sept. 21 for the first full-team practices and Oct. 1 as the first game day.

Later in the day, DPH acting commissioner Deidre S. Gifford says the department’s recommendations against football and indoor volleyball are not likely to change.

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Region 14 reverses its stance and allows Nonnewaug athletes to return to practice.

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In its final letter, DPH stands firm on its football and volleyball recommendations.

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(File)

The CIAC announces it will not play 11-on-11 football but plans to go ahead with girls volleyball, with players wearing masks.

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Please go to GametimeCT.com High School Sports to read full article.

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