New Mexico has decided to scrap fall plans for football and soccer, and is currently planning to pick them back up in the spring. The timeline for other fall non-contact sports like volleyball and cross country are under review with a possible delayed start to their seasons on the table in the state.
While many states have considered moving fall sports to the spring in the wake of the COVID pandemic and rising case numbers across the country, the announcement from the NMAA is the first such official announcement from a state athletic association.
The release reads, in part:
"The New Mexico Activities Association will be postponing both the 2020 football and soccer seasons to the spring semester. Although the NMAA and its member schools were hopeful that all interscholastic sports and activities could resume as originally scheduled this August, the continued coronavirus pandemic and resulting public health concerns have forced the association to consider adjustments for the 2020-2021 school year."
"The NMAA has been working with its membership on contingency plans in preparation for this scenario and will continue to do so in an effort to ensure all sport seasons can be played this academic year. A tentative plan should be available on or around July 15th."
New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham also shared via the Durango Herald.
“These contact sports are just too high risk. If we do well, if we work hard, it is possible we could just be delaying them and they could be played later in the year and later into the season. Fingers crossed, and I believe in you that we can get this done."
With a lot more states still considering a shift of the fall and spring sport seasons, many eyes are taking note of how New Mexico has handled this.
See the full release below.