UIL committee set to consider changes to upcoming year while coaches continue to monitor safety of athletes at summer workouts

UIL committee set to consider changes to upcoming year while coaches continue to monitor safety of athletes at summer workouts
student athletes workout at Lufkin High School's Indoor facility (Source: KTRE Sports)

LUFKIN, Texas (KTRE) - Summer workouts are pressing on for UIL student-athletes as cases see an increase in certain areas of Texas.

Schools are being forced to change the way they do summer workouts this year. In Lufkin, the coaches have divided up the athletes into three separate workout times as a way to keep numbers down. They also have done their best to keep athletes five yards apart in any direction, more than the required distance by the UIL. Athletes are still tested for their temperature everyday with a 95.5 cutoff.

“The coaches have done real good with being consistent,” head coach Todd Quick said. “The kids have picked it up and gotten into a routine. They are policing themselves now. They look up and see they are too close so they back up. We aren’t having to say to it every time.”

It has been challenging around the state, In the past two days multiple programs in the Beaumont area has shut down workouts due to COVID-19 concerns, starting with West Orange Stark after a student tested positive. On Monday, neighboring district Orangefield did the same.

“You got to protect them,” Quick said. “You have to protect them for the two hours they are here. You teach them that it doesn’t stop here. You have to do the things right when you leave here to keep you from getting sick or bringing it in. We are trying to have the least amount of cases we can have to carry into the football season.”

Next Monday, the UIL will ease up on rules and allow for 50% indoor capacity and individual workout group sizes can increase.

The UIL Athletics standing committee will also be meeting on Tuesday to discuss several issues that revolve around COVID-19 and the high school athletic scene.

Those agenda items include:

A proposal to add Covid-19 safety guidelines for cheer/drill team.

A proposal to continue athletics through Covid-19.

A proposal to allow schools to decide when to reopen their facilities due to Covid-19.

A proposal only allowing family to attend games in the fall due to Covid-19.

A proposal to not cancel non-contact sports due to Covid-19.

A proposal to suspend all sports for 20-21 due to Covid-19.

The fullmeeting agenda as well as information on how to watch can be found here.

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