Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Texas Cancels High School Sports

It was here in Texas that the term “Friday Night Lights” was coined. The lights that go on at high school football fields every Friday night in the late summer and fall.

Texas, as it turns out, is fanatical about sports in general, and football in particular.

So it came as a surprise to me today when I read the notice that the director of the University Interscholastic League, or UIL announced that he was canceling all UIL events in Texas until May 11.

Every sports event in Texas between now and then is cancelled.

From The Chron:

“‘The health and safety of our student activity participants is of the utmost importance,’ UIL Executive Director Dr. Charles Breithaupt said in a press release. ‘Taking every possible precaution to prevent the further spreading of this disease is an important contribution to the welfare of our great state, and altering the schedule of our events is a way to keep our participants safe.’”

I have a couple of comments on this.

First, it’s not football season anymore. That makes this move possible.

Second, I have to wonder about the likelihood of someone coming in contact with a carrier of Swine Flu on the baseball diamond.

Or at a track meet.

Out there in the open air.

Contrast that to the fact that it’s TAKS week. TAKS, you may or may not know, is a 4-hour test. Even if you finish it in 45 minutes, test takers must stay put in tiny cramped rooms for 4 tedious hours. And believe me, the air gets a little stale after awhile.

So I have to ask this: why is it not safe for high school athletes to travel to some place and compete in the open air, and absolutely safe to sit in a small cramped classroom for 4 hours? OK, I get it about limiting travel among the population, but it stands to reason that if there is a concern for spreading the flu virus in one case there should be concern in another.

Or am I missing something?


Anonymous said...

They really should allow this to be handled on a school by school basis. These blanket statements by officials is an over reaction.

Anonymous said...

Can you do a story on this:

Anonymous said...

If they can save money on it you can bet they will do it.

Hal said...

Sorry Anon #2. I don't do requests.

Anonymous said...

Must be orders from DB/SB...keep goose stepping and get those knees higher!