SAN ANTONIO – High school football teams around the San Antonio area are inching closer to starting their first full season in two years, but COVID-19 continues to lurk in the background.
SAISD is choosing to be more proactive about curbing the virus’ influence this year.
On Wednesday, San Antonio Independent School District announced via press release that seven football scrimmages had been canceled due to precautionary measures. By removing competition against teams outside of district prior to the start of the season and giving student-athletes more time to get properly vaccinated, the school district is hoping that their teams’ regular seasons will proceed as scheduled. The following is a list of the scrimmages canceled:
- Brackenridge vs. Southside
- Burbank vs. Austin Travis
- Edison vs. Central Catholic
- Highlands vs. Hondo
- Sam Houston vs. Cotulla
- Lanier vs. Floresville
- YMLA vs. John Paul
Below is the full press release:
Not all of our students who participate in athletics and other extracurricular activities have had an opportunity to get vaccinated against COVID-19. As a precaution, we are actively planning vaccine clinics this week and next to give these students that opportunity before our regular, UIL football season begins and to continue our regular, UIL volleyball season. We recognize that athletics are valuable to the social-emotional needs of our students. Therefore, we are prioritizing the regular season to give students the best assurance we can that they will be less likely to be quarantined during UIL-qualifying games.
For the health of our students and staff and their families, SAISD has some of the strictest safety protocols around COVID-19 for our athletes. These protocols include rapid testing prior to games; masking unless involved in a drill or game; and vaccinations for those who are eligible and want them.
With cases rising locally and across the state, we are being cautious to protect our regular, UIL season. Since practice games are discretionary, we will cancel any scrimmages against outside school districts unless SAISD student athletes and coaches are vaccinated. We cannot assure families that other districts follow the same strict protocols, and our intent is to make every effort possible to ensure students are healthy to play in their regular athletic season.SAISD Statement
Last season, SAISD enforced strict health and safety policies during the COVID-19 pandemic and limited their football teams to six-game seasons against district opponents. They are the first school district in the greater San Antonio area to change their preseason plans due to COVID-19 this year.
An SAISD athletic official confirmed to KSAT 12′s Larry Ramirez that teams will hold scrimmages against each other this coming weekend instead. No changes to the SAISD volleyball schedule have been announced as of yet.
Since their scrimmage against Brackenridge was canceled, Southside has since announced on twitter that the Cardinals will scrimmage against Austin Travis -- who was suppose to face Burbank -- in Austin on Friday night.