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New Jersey high school football officially begins following COVID-19 delay

High school football will officially begin in New Jersey this week after a monthlong delay because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

News 12 Staff

Sep 30, 2020, 1:14 AM

Updated 1,360 days ago

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High school football will officially begin in New Jersey this week after a monthlong delay because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Coaches and players say that during this time, it is all about adapting to the world around them.
“I think they’ve also recognized the seriousness of the matter at hand, in terms of asking kids to make more sacrifices,” says Wayne Valley Head Coach Roger Kotlarz.
Preparation for the season has been challenging as teams have only had two weeks of formal practice before the regular season starts. Kotlarz says that there may be some growing pains as everyone gets used to it.
“Conditioning, I think, is going to be a big variable, because things are so different this year and how teams negotiated their offseason conditioning was very different. So, I think it’s going to be one of the first challenges is going to see what the level of conditioning looks like,” he says.
Players say that it is about being smart when it comes to their individual health and safety.
“We’ve done a lot to prevent the cases rising. We sanitize all of the equipment. We do the daily prescreening before practice. We get our temperatures taken,” says Wayne Valley senior John Testa.
Similar protocols are in place for all of New Jersey’s other high school teams.
But despite all of the challenges, the athletes say that they are grateful that they have the opportunity to play sports once again.
“You never know if you’re going to be shortened or if you’re not going to have a season at all,” says Ramapo High School senior Tyler Cosgrove. “We’re going to take every game like it’s our last and hope we get those full eight in.”
High school football begins on Friday. News 12 New Jersey will have all of the highlights on the “Friday Night Football” program.


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