With so many unknowns still swirling around what high school sports will look like during the 2020-21 school year,
The News-Gazette sports staff will attempt to provide a few answers. Have a question? Let sports editor Matt Daniels
or preps coordinator Colin Likas know by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, and they’ll track down an answer.
Today’s topic: How will football schedules come together?
Before the coronavirus pandemic hit, Mahomet-Seymour football had its scheduled 2020 season opener at Marion on Aug. 28.
Of course, the game won’t happen initially as scheduled since the IHSA moved football to the spring this school year. And M-S likely won’t play Marion, a school nearly 200 miles south of Mahomet.
Conference games are the priority for whenever the season kicks off. Or games within a team’s COVID-19 region.
“I’ve heard a few crazy ideas about football already,” M-S athletic director Matt Hensley said. “Imagine that.”
It looks like a seven-game regular season is possible, followed up by a regional type postseason.
In the case of M-S, the Bulldogs already had six Apollo Conference games on the pre-pandemic schedule against Charleston, Effingham, Lincoln, Mattoon, Mt. Zion and Taylorville, with three nonconference games against Marion, Macomb and Bloomington.
Needless to say, adjustments will likely need to transpire for the Bulldogs as they attempt to fill out their schedule. An in-person meeting between Apollo Conference athletic directors — Hensley said they will be socially distanced and wearing masks — is on the calendar this upcoming week to try to start sorting out some details.
“The way I’m looking at it, you’re kicking out a Week 1 nonconference game and you’re kicking out a Week 9 nonconference game, then you play conference games in Weeks 2 through 7,” Hensley said. “So then it comes to down, ‘Well, where am I going to find that seventh game against a Class 4A school. Is there somebody out there, or a group of somebodys out there, that you play for one year that have a rotating open date that we can jump on board with?’ That is the way I’m approaching that.”