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Jackson Public Schools may cancel its 2020 football season



High school football players are awaiting a decision from the Jackson Public Schools district about cancellation of the 2020 football season due to the rising risks of COVID-19.

JPS football coaches were informed Monday that there will be no football season, The Clarion Ledger reported, which caused two coaches to speak out.

“All the hard work, the dedication they put in, for them not to have the opportunity would really hurt them,” Forest Hill High Coach Jeremy Jones told the paper. “I know the pandemic is going on, but I don’t think a rushed decision was the best decision.”

Lanier High School’s head coach Michael Ashford also spoke out.

“If this pandemic had been handled the way it should have been, we’d probably be in a different situation,” he told The Clarion Ledger. “But since it was handled the way a lot of people think it should not have been handled, these are the consequences we have to suffer.”

Jackson Public Schools is refuting the information. Sherwin Johnson of JPS issued the following statement to The Clarion Ledger:

“The JPS coaching staff were recently contacted by a District official and misinformed that a decision had been made to cancel the fall football season.

“There has been no official decision or announcement yet regarding athletics and extracurricular activities for the fall semester in Jackson Public Schools.

“The District is carefully reviewing potential options, safety guidelines and recommendations from local and state health officials as it considers whether or not to allow sports and other events in the fall. The health, safety, and well-being of our students, staff and families will guide whatever decision is made.”

The Mississippi High School Activities Association voted two weeks ago to delay the start of football season by two weeks, beginning the season on Sept. 4.

An official announcement from JPS is expected this week.

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