Governor Asa Hutchinson

Governor Asa Hutchinson met with the media Friday and said, among other COVID-19 related updates, the following about fall high school sports: 

"My message for football players for Monday is to grab your helmet and have practice. Then after practice grab your mask."

Gov. Hutchinson also moved forward with a plan to proceed with "no contact team drills with helmets" August 3-7. He wants the Arkansas Activities Association to present a plan to the Department of Health to have football and other sports this fall. He is also establishing high school sports advisory group. Governor Hutchinson: "The plan is to have contact in sports after next week. Our advisory group will explore best practices and we’ll make decisions as we go. I hope next week there are zero positive cases among athletes in Arkansas, but that might not be the case."

Governor Hutchinson: Sports is not mandatory. Students can make the decision to play or not. Parents can make that decision. But these are important activities.

Governor Hutchinson: If you don’t have these team sports what are these young people going to be doing? They’re going to be out and about and doing things that could leave them infected. This is about structure and teaching them learn about life.

Lance Taylor, with the Arkansas Activities Association, said "I hope you were listening coaches. You were just challenged. You have to tell your athletes wearing masks is what’s going to determine whether you can play for a championship this year."