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MHSA lays out guidelines for basketball


November 20, 2020

The Montana High School Association Executive Board held an online meeting on November 4 to discuss some of the different regulations, guidelines and formats for its upcoming winter athletic season.

“Along with the National Federation of High School Associations, the MHSA Executive Board believes the continuation of sports and other activities is crucial to the growth, development, and mental and emotional wellness of our Montana youth,” MHSA executive director Mark Beckman wrote to school administrators.

The MHSA spectator policy will remain the same during basketball season, left in the hands of local health departments. The board also moved the start date for basketball games up a couple days to Saturday, January 2. Basketball practices will begin on December 7.

The basketball calendar will remain unchanged and dates for postseason tournaments will be the same. Sites will be determined according to availability and local health departments approval.

There will be no multi-team events or tip-off tournaments, and the eighteen-game limit for basketball will remain in place. Scheduled games that don’t happen due to schools or teams experiencing quarantines will be considered “no contest.” If a school refuses to go to a location where contests are allowed it will be considered a forfeit. Individual conferences will be responsible for determining post season seeding criteria taking into consideration these situations.

The board also recommended that all coaches and players receive the flu vaccine.

“Once again, we believe that the safety and well-being of our student activity participants is paramount. These requirements, both general and activity specific, attempt to reduce the possibility of transmission of coronavirus for our student activity participants and for coaches, officials and fans of MHSA activities.,” Beckman wrote.


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