Syracuse, N.Y. — The kickoff to an abbreviated football season in Section III this winter/early spring will come a little later than expected.
The section has approved a Monday start for the beginning of practices in that sport, but it appears as though many if not all schools are holding off a week or more.
The Salt City Athletic Conference, for example, won’t begin practice until March 8. Whitesboro athletic director Michael Deuel said he thinks the Tri-Valley League has the same target date.
The Onondaga High School League is waiting until March 15. Teams need 10 full practices before they can play games.
The leagues are holding off on football so winter sport athletes can have a longer season. Winter sports such as hockey and basketball are allowed to run to March 13. So in the SCAC, dual-sport athletes would be looking at a week overlap at the most.
SCAC athletic directors are scheduled to meet Friday to iron out alignment and scheduling formats. The OHSL has already mapped out its plans in that regard.
According to OHSL president Don McClure, the league will be divided into four pods. The North is Phoenix, Sandy Creek, Mexico, APW, Pulaski and Hannibal; the Class B group is Westhill, Marcellus, Homer, ITC and Chittenango; the Class C pod includes Cazenovia, Skaneateles, Bishop Ludden and Solvay; and the Class D group is Onondaga, Cato, Jordan-Elbridge and Southern Hills.
Teams will compete within their pods and play from four to six games apiece. The OHSL schedule will be wrapped up by April 21.
Practice for spring sports in Section III is allowed to begin April 19. That season can run through June 30, although it’s possible many schools will finish sooner. Section III officials are expected to decide next month whether there will be sectionals in the spring sports, such as lacrosse, track, baseball and softball.
Contact Lindsay Kramer anytime: Email | Twitter
MORE HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS
A NY state high school wrestling ‘championship’? Yes, but it’s in another state (see CNY roster)
HS girls basketball: Katie MacLachlan scores 30 points as Marcellus wins fifth-straight game
HS boys basketball: Phoenix off to fast start with fourth win
Section III high school sports schedule, scoreboard and live stream info for Feb. 24