Illinois didn’t play high school football this fall and now it seems the high school basketball season is in doubt. The Governor’s office and Department of Public Health say basketball, wresting and hockey are all postponed until further notice.
IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike says that the science shows that active sports indoors is a breeding ground for the virus and that is one reason why the seasons are being delayed.
The IHSA says they were notified of changes to IDPH’s stance on the winter sports seasons 15 minutes before the Governor’s daily press briefing.
In a statement respond to Gov. Pritzker's Tuesday announcement, IHSA Executive Director Craig Anderson says quote - “About 15 minutes prior to Governor Pritzker’s press conference today, we were alerted that the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) has elevated the sport of basketball from a medium risk level to a high risk level. We remain considerate of the recent rise in positive COVID-19 cases in our state. However, in our meeting with IDPH on Friday (October 23), we felt that we presented multiple options that would allow for basketball to be conducted safely by IHSA schools this winter, many of which are being utilized in neighboring states who plan to play high school basketball. Despite that setback, there is some positive news, as IDPH accepted the IHSA’s mitigations related to other sports, including cheerleading and dance, allowing them to move from a medium risk level to a low risk level. We will hold our special Board of Directors meeting on October 28 as scheduled, where our Board will provide direction on the other winter sports, as well as discuss the IHSA sports schedule for the remainder of the 2020-21 school year.”