JAY - High school sports are starting back up…sort of.

On June 1 athletes were allowed to work out (strength and conditioning) at school, but no “official” coaching from any school staff.

Yet, different schools are spooling up at different rates. For instance, Oaks Mission and Colcord are not doing anything this summer. Coach Jarrod Earp in Colcord said “We won’t be doing anything this summer.

At Kansas High School, Coach Austin Graham said they’re “not doing anything in June”, but doing some individual lifting and running and baseball players working on their own.

“The first games will be in August (softball), with football starting at the end of August,” said Graham.

In Jay, Coach Mike Moore said baseball practice began on June 1 with their first game on June 8. Students can work out in the weight room, but “only with a limited number of kids, seven to ten, with masks.”

Athletes can only be inside for 45 minutes at a time, then the coaches have to clean to sanitize before the next group is allowed in and custodians do a thorough cleaning and sanitizing on weekends.

It takes some creative scheduling of the weight room to get the high school boys, girls and then add in freshman and sophomore boys and girls, in for work outs.

Jay Athletic Director, Jeff Stapleton, added more details to the Jay plan saying “The guidelines are in place to protect kids and coaches.”

The coaches will use infrared thermometers and no one with a temperature of 100.4 or more will be allowed. Wipes and spray sanitizers will be readily available. Masks will be worn by spotters and coaches in the weight room, but not on those who are conditioning.

Currently, there are four sessions for conditioning for the 6th to 12th grades: 9-12 grade girls, 9-12 grade boys, 6-8 grade girls and 6-grade boys.

They have scheduled more “open gym” where athletes work on their own without instruction.

“We are starting at a very slow pace because most have been sitting around and gotta be easy on them, at first,” explained Stapleton. “All of our activities at Jay will follow OSSAA (Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association) summer guidelines.”

There will be no travel, no hostings and no camps. He said there will be no spring football, but “very hopeful for fall football.”

All the coaches agreed that the students are ready to get back and the coaches are anxious to see their students. It has been more than three months since being with the students.

No one knows how the lack of practice and how the pandemic will affect sports this year, but it does create sort of a level playing field for every school.

At times this summer the OSSAA wasn’t always as clear as they could have been, as coaches across the state yearned for more details at times.

As the school year begins, so will sports and other school activities, but what will they look like and how will the bleachers look this year?

OSSAA phased guidelines

PHASE ONE—JUNE 1, 2020 THROUGH JUNE 26, 2020 On June 1, 2020 coaches may have face-to-face contact with secondary level students using the provisions provided below.

No team practice is permitted.

No camps, clinics, or leagues may be conducted. Strength and conditioning is permitted.

PHASE TWO—JULY 6, 2020 THROUGH JULY 15, 2020 No team practice is permitted.

No camps, clinics, or leagues may be conducted.

Strength and conditioning is permitted. - Social distancing guidelines must be followed - Hands must be washed or hand sanitizer used prior to the use of any equipment - Any equipment used including weights, balls, bats, helmets, etc. must be disinfected appropriately with use - Tryouts are permitted (must follow OSSAA Policy for tryouts) - No shared hydrating bottles, towels, gloves, or any other personal equipment is permitted

JULY 15, 2020 Practice may begin for fast-pitch softball, fall baseball, volleyball, cross country.