Dear Parents and Student Athletes,
I wanted to take this opportunity to update you on information regarding Spring Sports. Since my last email and as a result of the Governor Holcomb yesterday closing schools until May 1st, I have new information directly from IHSAA Commissioner Bobby Cox.
|To: Member School Principals and Athletic Administrators
From: Bobby Cox, Commissioner
Re: Spring Sports Updates
Good afternoon. With today’s announcement from Governor Holcomb closing all Indiana schools until at least May 1, 2020, we are announcing the following adjustments to the spring athletic seasons.
Currently, we still intend to stage an abbreviated spring sports program. The provisions to follow are contingent upon a return to school including approved gatherings of multiple students by May 1, 2020. From this point forward until May 1, 2020, all IHSAA spring sports (Track & Field, Unified Track & Field, Softball, Baseball, Boys Golf and Girls Tennis) are now to revert to IHSAA By-Law 15-2, During School Year Out-of-Season. This allows parents and students to make an independent determination to seek activity that is non-school sponsored while schools are out of session. This is NOT an invitation to begin a limited contact period or conditioning which is school sponsored and against the directive of our Governor. If we are able to resume on May 1, 2020, the number of separate days of practice necessary to participate in any interscholastic event, including contests shall be set at five (5). We trust these accommodations allow our students the ability to maintain a certain level of fitness during this time of school closure and hopefully return to competition yet this spring. We appreciate and thank you for your support and understanding during these unprecedented times. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us at your convenience. Be safe and healthy.
Bobby Cox, IHSAA Commissioner
Before I clarify what Commissioner’s, Cox email is stating, I remind everybody while LCSC is not in school, no practices or athletic events will take place in LCSC buildings or outside on school grounds. No coaches will instruct players or parents to get together at alternative sites to conduct practices or conditioning programs. However, it is highly encouraged that a student athlete work on their own and/or with their parent to maintain their strength and conditioning and sharpen their athletic skills. If student athletes contact each other wanting to work together, please understand this situation has not been initiated by a coach, should not be perceived as a practice and the decision whether or not to participate is up to the parents and student athletes.
I would like to clarify what Commissioner’s Cox is speaking about when he mentions IHSAA Rule 15-2. I have also copied and pasted the rule from the IHSAA By-Laws below. Essentially, what Commissioner Cox is now saying is the Spring Sports season has not started. And Lebanon student athletes that are participating in a Spring Sport, now fall under rule 15-2 which is, “During the school year out of season”, and not in season. As a result, spring individual sports programs (which is rule 15-2.1 Cross-Country, Golf, Tennis, and Track and Field) may participate in non-school contest as individuals or as members of a non-school team in non-school competitions. This rule does allow our coaches to coach that student athlete in that sport as long as they are not under the organization, supervision and operation of the member school. Please understand that LCSC has decided against our coaches doing this for what we feel is the best interest and safety of our student athletes. We are following the Health Department and Governor’s guideline by promoting social distancing. LHS Athletes that participate in individual sports practices or competitions will be a decision left up to the parent and student athlete without any initiation, assistance, coaching or direction from LHS coaches.
Rule 15-2 is Team Sports (Baseball and Softball) states students may participate in Team Sport practice and contests as members of a non-school team provided no more than the following number of students participated in a contest the previous season as a member of their school teams in that sport. Baseball – 5 Football – 6 Softball – 5 Basketball – 3 Soccer – 7 Volleyball – 3. What this means is students may participate on a team outside of LHS for baseball and softball as long as there are no more than 5 players from LHS on that team. Again, this decision is left up to the parent and student athlete without any initiation, assistance, coaching or direction from LHS coaches.
The final part of Commissioner’s Cox message states all Spring Sports will need 5 days of practices before competition may occur. If we return to school on May 1st and assuming we hold practices Friday the 1st and Saturday the 2nd, all Lebanon Spring Sports would be eligible for competition on Thursday, May 7th. A reduced schedule will be created and I ask that you please be patient as I work through this difficult process with AD’s and our coaches.
I hope everyone is doing their part to stay safe and I look forward to seeing you all soon. TIGER PRIDE!
Phil Levine, CAA
IHSAA RULE 15-2
15-2 During School Year Out-of-Season (Page 55 and 56)
15-2.1 Individual Sports (Cross Country, Golf, Gymnastics, Swimming, Tennis, Track, Wrestling) a. Students may participate in non-school Contests as individuals or as members of a Non-School Team in non-school Contests provided that participation during school time is approved by the School principal or his/her designee.
- Coaches, from a Member School Coaching Staff, may coach students in that sport if NOT under the organization, supervision and operation the member School.
- Member Schools may not organize, supervise or operate athletic Practices or interschool athletic Contests, other than permitted through a School’s Limited Contact Program, Section 15-2.5.
- Member Schools may not provide School-owned uniforms (jerseys, shirts, shorts, pants, singlets, or swimsuits, etc.) worn by the student in non-school Contests.
15-2.2 Team Sports (Baseball, Basketball, Football, Soccer, Softball and Volleyball)
- Students may participate in Team Sport Practice and Contests as members of a Non-School Team provided no more than the following number of students, (i) who have participated in a Contest the previous season as a member of One (1) of their School teams in that sport or (ii) who are incoming freshman (and seek to participate on a Non-School Team from Monday of Week 5 until the date of the first authorized Practice in that sport), are rostered on the same Non-School Team, at the same time. Seniors, who have exhausted their eligibility in a particular sport, do not count in the maximum number of students that can participate on a Non-School Team in that sport. Baseball – 5 Football – 6 Softball – 5 Basketball – 3 Soccer – 7 Volleyball – 3
- During the School Year Out-of-Season, the following standards also must be met for a student to participate in Team Sports practices and contests as a member of a Non-School Team:
(1.) Participation in Team Sports practices and contests during school time must be approved by the School principal or his/her designee.
(2.) Fees for a Non-School Team, if charged, must be provided solely by the student, parent or Guardian. No school or athletic funds shall be used for such when students of grades 9-12 are involved.
(3.) Participation on a Non-School Team shall be open to all students.
(4.) Merchandise and awards, other than those of symbolic value, may NOT be accepted for athletic proficiency. Student must remain an amateur.
- During the School Year Out-of-Season, a student who has previously participated in a Contest as a member of a School’s team or any freshman, and who is participating in Team Sports practices or contests as a member of a Non-School Team, may not receive instruction from individuals who are members of the student’s high School coaching staff. (Exception: Coaches may instruct their sons or daughters.)
- Member Schools may not organize, supervise or operate athletic practices for Non-School Teams.
- Member Schools may not provide School-owned uniforms (shorts, pants, singlets, or swimsuits, etc.) worn by the student in Non-School contests.