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ORLANDO, FL - JANUARY 04: Cornerback Greg Reid #24 of the black team returns an kick in the All America Under Armour Football Game at Florida Citrus Bowl on January 4, 2009 in Orlando, Florida. (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)

North Carolina public high school students won’t have sports this fall, as the North Carolina High School Athletic Association voted to move the Fall 2020 sports season – including the high school football season in NC – to winter and spring.

The move comes in reaction to the altered school schedules in response to coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions statewide. The association made a number of modifications to sports schedules, but most notably, moved football to start in early February. Several other sports schedules were adjusted, and many seasons were shortened.

“We feel it is critically important to provide opportunities for North Carolina student athletes to participate, and compete, in education-based athletics,” Dr. Josh Bloom of the NCHSAA Sports Medicine Advisory Committee said. “While there are risks with resuming NCHSAA sanctioned athletics, it has also become very clear that there are significant negative consequences with not providing this option to student athletes. Accordingly, this is an exercise in balance – and we are committed to an appropriate balance of both safety AND participation.”

Other notable changes include volleyball moving to Nov. 4-Jan. 8 (first games Nov. 16), basketball moving to Dec. 7-Feb. 19 (first games Jan. 4), softball moving to March 1-April 30 (first games March 15), and baseball moving to April 12-June 11 (first games April 26).

Brandon Plotnick is a former sports journalist, now living in the digital space with interests all over the musical and pop culture map.