KHSAA pushes start of football playoffs back one week

First round will now start November 19-21
Posted at 9:16 AM, Nov 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-07 09:16:27-05

LEXINGTON, Ky. — The Kentucky High School Athletic Association is pushing the start of the playoffs back one week to November 19-21 to allow their schools to work with their local health departments on the best course of action going forward.

The KHSAA contacted the schools Saturday morning to let them know about the change and that, as of now, no changes will be made to the format of the playoffs.

“It goes without saying that we are in the midst of issues within our state and the current status of the pandemic. I have stated all along that decisions made by our office, at any point in time, would be done so in the best interest of student-athletes. While it may be a calculated strategic decision that in time, we feel was not the best path, we have to make decisions based on today’s information because tomorrow is so unknown,” said KHSAA Commissioner Julian Tackett. “This decision isn’t just about the few ongoing quarantines, it’s about 82 counties Friday being defined as “red” including the vast majority of the east. It’s about giving our schools time to deal with the issues around athletics which are not identical to the issues around the school day and as such, may need separate local discussions.

“One of the deciding factors in this situation is determining what course of action to take given today’s information, that we feel gives our students the best chance to have a postseason experience. We have been calculated and strategic throughout this process and will continue to do so during these extremely challenging times, with the students’ health and ability to participate both being at the forefront of our minds.”

The KHSAA added the following guidelines for its schools:

  • The first round will begin with the weekend of November 19-20-21.
  • A reminder that teams are permitted to schedule contests this season after elimination (or withdrawal) HOWEVER THERE IS A MORATORIUM ON HOLDING GAMES THE WEEKEND OF NOVEMBER 11/12-13-14. NO CONTESTS SHOULD BE SCHEDULED THIS WEEK.
  • The bracket builder for 2020 is again listed online at should be considered a draft at this point due to withdrawals.
  • Teams may voluntarily withdraw from the playoffs without penalty using the FB144 form.
  • If a seeded team withdraws and other district teams remain in the alignment, those teams not qualifying from earlier from within that district will be given an opportunity to enter the bracket.
  • If there are withdrawals during the process, the bracket pod (district) will be re-seeded up to a point, after which the withdrawal will simply create a bye. We need to give schools at least a couple of days to sort out current situations. The status of the statistics around the virus will drive that “point” which will be announced early this coming week. Setting artificial deadlines and boundaries has not worked with this virus and the data around it to this point.
  • The review will be ongoing as it has been all along, and it is possible substantial changes could be made as needed in future days and weeks.