COLUMBUS, Ohio — A newly-signed state department of health order on high school sports goes into effect this Friday.
Gov. Mike DeWine on Tuesday gave the go-ahead for contact sports including high school football, soccer and field hockey seasons to start on time this month during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Per the order, spectators will be limited to players' parents, family members or those closest to the student athlete. Outdoor sporting events will be limited to 15% seating capacity or a maximum 1,500 people.
Additionally, the order mandates wearing masks around others and on team transports, social distancing and sanitizing high-touch surfaces in sports facilities. The order also recommends teams playing only with other local teams to eliminate travel.
The OHSAA requirements, based on the governor's guidance, limits the number of players dressing for contests. The limits are 60 in football, 22 in soccer and field hockey, and 15 in volleyball.
In addition, the OHSAA is limiting marching and/or pep bands to performing only at home contests.
All sports are allowed to proceed this fall without COVID-19 testing in place. Low/non-contact sports such as girls volleyball, cross country, golf and girls tennis have already been cleared to play this fall season.
The soccer and field hockey seasons start Friday, while football begins the week of Aug. 24.
Read the full order in the viewer below: