San Diego County CIF Commissioner working to resume prep sports quickly

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – On Friday, hours after the state revised its guidelines to allow certain sports activities in counties with relatively low rates of new COVID-19 cases, San Diego Superior Court Judge Earl H. Maas III agreed with the plaintiffs in his written ruling that young athletes were not at greater risk of contracting or transmitting COVID-19 than their professional or collegiate counterparts.

Maas briefly referenced the new guidelines issued by the state, but wrote that “competent evidence was not provided to the court in this regard” at Friday’s hearing and thus he declined “to anticipate what the (state) `may’ do in the coming week.”

Under the state guidelines, resuming football, rugby and water polo will also require weekly COVID-19 testing of players — aged 13 and above — and coaches, with test results made available within 24 hours of a competition. Newsom said the state would absorb the cost of the required testing.

The guidance applies to all forms of organized youth sports, including school and community programs, and private clubs and leagues.

Newsom said the combination of school closures and the inability for youth to participate in sports has had both a physical and mental health impact, “in profound and significant and in many cases deleterious ways.” He said the downward trends in COVID cases in California prompted the state to move forward with a resumption of youth sports.

“We are now confident … that we can get youth sports moving again in the state of California, get competition moving again in the state of California with, as always, caveats,” he said. “None of us are naive. … Despite those very encouraging trends, we still need to be cautious until we reach herd immunity.”

But, Attorney Stephen Grebing told KUSI’s Paul Rudy that CIF has refused to honor Judge Maas’s order, so they have been communicating with them to get that done.

The Let Them Play CA movement has been asking people to call Heinz’s office to voice their support for getting kids back on the field, as every other state in the country has already done.

To explain what is going on with CIF, San Diego County CIF Commissioner Joe Heinz Good Morning San Diego to share the latest on getting high school athletes back playing sports again.

Heinz began explaining, “what this ruling did allow for as you had said Paul, is it allows schools to follow the California Department of Public Health Guidelines for collegiate or professional teams. That means they must create safety plans, similar to, or the same as, college or pro teams, and they must be developed before those teams can actually start participation.”

Heinz added that CIF San Diego is working with the various departments to get our kids back on the field as quickly as possible, but the collegiate and professional teams have access to more funds than our high schools do, so there is still some work to do.

Categories: California News, Coronavirus, Good Morning San Diego, Sports