New Guidelines Allows for Return of High-Risk Sports in Local Illinois Counties

New COVID-19 guidance released by the Illinois Department of Public Health on Friday allows for sports considered 'high-risk' like basketball, football, and wrestling, to resume in counties currently in Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois plan.

Posted: Jan 22, 2021 3:48 PM
Updated: Jan 22, 2021 3:49 PM

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) announced Friday new sports guidance for all youth and adult recreational sports for counties currently in Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois plan.

With Friday's announcement, Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois Plan now expands the level of play for all sports to allow play at the intra-conference, region, or league levels.

Regions 3, 5, and 6 are currently in Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois Plan. Local counties in Region 5 include Wabash, White, Gallatin, Edwards, Wayne, Hamilton, Salin counties, with Richland and Lawrence counties just outside of that in Region 6.

Before Friday's announcement, many were expecting Illinois Governor JB Pritzker and IDPH to entirely cancel sports categorized as high risk. Sports categorized as High Risk include Basketball, Boxing, Football, Hockey, Lacrosse, Martial Arts, Rugby, Ultimate Frisbee, Wrestling.

As of now, it's unknown if the IHSA will start the basketball season immediately, as the current schedule says, or if they'll push it back to Spring.

Football, however, is currently scheduled to start on Feb. 15.

To view the full sports guidance document released by IDPH on Friday, click here.

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