Metro Nashville Public Schools are getting closer to the return of high school football.
Football coaches have been given approval to begin contact practice today, according to MNPS spokesperson Sean Braisted. The start date for games remains unclear amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We will continue to monitor the COVID-19 metrics to make further determinations regarding starting games and competitions,” Braisted said in an email on Friday. “All extracurricular social distancing guidelines and precautions must be followed. In alignment with our phase-in approach for in-person learning, we will begin to phase in extracurricular activities as long as conditions allow.”
The TSSAA requires athletes to participate in 10 days of contact drills before they can play in a game. Metro teams have held conditioning workouts and non-contact drills since the dead period ended in early July, but they haven’t been allowed any contact until now.
If teams ramp up their practices immediately and are given approval to play games, the earliest start date could be Friday, Sept. 25 – Week 6 of the high school football season.
MNPS Director Adrienne Battle announced on Aug. 25 that sporting events were on hold “until further notice.” That came after a July 29 letter stated that Metro high school sports would not be played until at least after Labor Day.
Davidson County has 984 active COVID-19 cases, 25,777 recoveries and 248 virus-related deaths as of Friday, according to data from the Metro Public Health Department.