IHSA goes against Gov. Pritzker

IHSA goes against Gov. Pritzker

With the cancellation or postponement of most fall sports in Illinois earlier this school year and with cases of COVID-19 starting to rise again, many were unsure whether winter sports like girls and boys basketball would start on time. 

The Illinois High School Association (IHSA) recently announced that all high school basketball players would be able to start on time beginning practices as soon as November 16, defying the orders of Gov. J.B. Pritzker. Naturally, many coaches around Illinois didn’t know how to take this news.

We’ve been on an emotional roller coaster,” Hillcrest boys basketball coach Don Houston said in an interview with the Chicago Tribune. “Is the season starting or isn’t it? Now we know, and it feels great.”

Not only will this come as good news to the coaches who wanted their players to be able to get on the courts this season, but the athletes themselves who have been wondering if they will get to play this year.

Although many schools are choosing to go ahead and play, there may be some that follow Pritzker’s lead and decide not to play at all.

“We’ve told school districts what the rules are, and I think they all know,” Pritzker said. “So, IHSA may have their own views of it, but school districts know what the rules are.”

That means in many cases it will come down to the districts having the final decision-making power in what ultimately could be a historic year for high school basketball players. Obviously, there will still be restrictions in place like wearing a mask during games, which will make things look a lot different.

In terms of district 214, the plan as of right now is to go ahead and continue with practices, but a final decision won’t be made until after the outcome of the IHSA monthly meeting, which will be held on November 19th.