Local high school football players look forward to season

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COLUMBIA - When COVID-19 began to shutdown mid-Missouri in March, many wondered how long the pandemic would last.

Some speculated it would be over by Memorial Day. Others hoped it would end by the Fourth of July.

It's August and the pandemic, as well as the precautions taken to contain it, do not seem to be slowing down. 

Many local events have been canceled or postponed— but high school football is not yet on the list. 

MSHSAA guidelines released Wednesday announced that schools not offering in-person learning because of COVID-19 are still eligible to participate in athletics. 

"It's a cautious optimism, but it's optimism," Battle High School athletic director Alex Huck said. "We've been playing this cautious game all summer with the hope that come August 10 we're gonna be ready to roll and get the balls out there and start practices. And as of right now knock on wood, that's still where we're at."

Jevean Brown, who graduated from Hickman this year, said of his former teammates, "I don't want that (the season)  ever to be taken away from them. I look forward to them having great year."

Many states including Illinois have pushed fall sports including football to the spring. 

Junior quarterback Eric Turner said, "(The Seniors) get more offers to go to college and I feel pretty ecstatic that all of us get to showcase our improvement and our skills that we've worked on over the summer."

MSHSAA has left the rules regarding fan attendance up to local jurisdiction.