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Meriden to proceed with High School football for 2020 fall season

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MERIDEN, Conn. (WTNH)– The city of Meriden has announced that their High School football season will proceed for the 2020 fall season.

City officials say that while they don’t recommend that game play occur, as that is the recommendation from the Department of Health and the local health department, they recognize that football will be played nonetheless either as a club sport or in private leagues.

Related: CIAC reaffirms decision to cancel football for 2020-2021 school year

Officials says that would lead to game play outside of the city and “outside the ability to manage player exposure.”

Governor Ned Lamont said Thursday, “We’re seeing some sports-related flareups already around the state. But look, I’m being consistent in the sense that, at the end of the day, we’re gonna leave that decision up to the local jurisdictions, the superintendents and the coaches,” 

City Manager Tim Coon explained their decision:

“At this time, Meriden has elected to permit the sport of football to be played in the fall. The Meriden Department of Health and Human Services and I have provided requirements that will mitigate the risk of COVID-19 exposure. The intention behind the requirements is to keep the student-athletes, coaches, and support staff at the lowest exposure risk possible during the season,” said Coon. “I’d say science is what we are following…and an analysis of risk. What has to be done is you have to weigh the risk, and how can we mitigate that.”

Related: DPH responds to CIAC’s proposal to consider high school football

Those requirements are the following:

  • Any positive test for COVID 19, by any player, coach, assistant coach, or any other individual involved with a high school team that is deemed by the Director of Health and Human Services to have exposed the team, will require that entire team to quarantine for the required 14 days.
  • If the State of Connecticut COVID positivity rate exceeds 5% on any day during the football season, game play, at a minimum will be halted. Additionally, if the State in any of its ministerial decisions, indicates that game play will be halted, that also will conclude high school football game play.
  • High school football in Meriden will be conducted under the Football Return to Action Plan. The State of CT Reopen Rules for Sports must also be followed. Violations of the Reopen Rules may lead to games being halted/seasons being canceled.

Coon says one other stipulation is that the two squads can only play their games in Meriden.

Final approval has to come form the Meriden Board of Education.

For more details on the city’s decision and the requirements, click here.

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