March 30 2020

MIAA Holds Conference Call to Discuss the Upcoming 2020 Spring Sports Season

By: Robert Parris

The Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) held a conference call on Monday, March 30th to discuss the upcoming 2020 Spring Sports Season.


During the meeting members voted on a number of motions. The following were motions that were approved by the MIAA Board of Directors.


Motion 1 was to begin the spring sports season no earlier than May 4 and have completion of regular season and tournament games by June 27 with consideration of June 28, 2020 for weather and facility needs. The motion passed with a unanimous vote of 19-0. 


Student Eligibility/School Requirements:


There was also a motion to waive the 13-month rule for physicals providing that the student-athlete physical was up-to-date on March 13, 2020 or that a virtual physical or physicians note giving permission to the student-athlete to participate is received between March 14 and May 4. This motion also passed unanimously. 


Academic Eligibility Rule:


There was also a motion that MIAA will waive the rule on Academic Eligibility, and allow for each principal to individually determine their own local academic eligibility standard for the 2020 Spring Season. This passed 19-0. 


Starting and Closing Dates for Tryouts, Practices, and Contests for Spring 2020:


The organization took a number of motions to provide schools with consistent calendar dates to maximize the amount of seasonal play while keeping the safety of student-athletes. 


The first motion was that the first team competition may not start until the seventh calendar day after the start of the 2020 spring season. This was approved 19-0. 


The second stated that the 2020 spring season participation will be extended for all teams at all levels through June 27. This was approved by a closer margin of 10-9


A third motion in this category stated there will be no exclusion or endowment games during the spring of 2020. This was approved unanimously. 


Recognized Sports, and Scheduling Limits for Schools:


The group also had a motion on scheduling limts to provide guidance and consistency to spring sport teams. 


The motion stated that for all sports, except for rugby, the maximum number of competitions for tournament qualification is twelve games and the minimum number of competitions is eight games. This was approved with 12 votes in favor, zero against and one abstention. 


Further the MIAA said that there is no change to current status regarding the number of competitions per week will remain as it states in the MIAA handbook.


There was also discussion about the Bona Fide Team Rule and its impact on tournament participation and the recommendation to allow an amendment for out-of-season coaching. These topics will be discussed at a future MIAA Board meeting. 


The MIAA Board also put forth a request to the Tournament Management Committee to submit tournament structure recommendations to the Board by April 9. 


The MIAA will meet at a later date, not yet determined, to review these motions and guidelines.



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