NSAA examining possibilities for spring sports season

NORTH PLATTE, Neb. (KNOP) - On Wednesday, March 25, the NSAA announced it would be extending its activities suspension until May 1.

The NSAA will not have any activities until the earliest May 1. (Credit: Patrick Johnstone/KNOP-TV)

The NSAA has cancelled district music events, but is looking into possibilities to still host State speech.

"Speech was looked at just doing a video, internet-wise, however the bandwidth across the state and in some areas does not allow that. So that's a thing that maybe be dropped, it still has not yet," Board of Directors member Dan Keyser said.

As for the spring sports season, practices and competitions could start May 1 if the suspension does not need to be extended further, but there are some obstacles to competition. The State government has set a date of May 7 as when schools in the Fremont/Omaha/Lincoln area can resume activities, and there is still a ten person gathering limit in effect due to Coronavirus.

Keyser said the NSAA hopes it can get as many competitions in as possible once they are allowed to do so.

"If you had one or two local competitions and then have like a regional thing, like in track we (Sutherland) always host the Best of the Midwest; things like that would be something that would be neat to have, so kids don't lose everything," he said.

Not only is Keyser the superintendent for Sutherland Public Schools, he is also an assistant coach for the Sailors football team, and has been coaching for nearly three decades; so he understands how the students feel about the postponement of the season.

"They have a lot of goals, and a lot of dreams, and put a lot of effort. Especially if you're a senior or junior, you've spent three or four years preparing for this time. So, it's very disappointing for them," Keyser said. "

The Board of Directors has discussed the possibility of extending the sports season into the summer, but Keyser says that may not be feasible.

"You have contracts with your school employees that may have something else that they're doing; most contracts end in May. The other thing we really want to watch out for is that we don't lose another season. We don't want to carry this into the fall season and lose part of that season too. We really have to be mindful, not that we want to not allow kids to have any opportunities, it's just a complicated issue. It's a lot of speculation, there's really not a playbook for what we're going through at this time, it's just ever changing," he said.

However, Keyser wants people to know the NSAA is examining every possible option for still having a season.

"Know that the NSAA, we are working as hard as we can. The staff is working extremely hard from different ideas, we haven't just dropped the ball and said 'hey, this is it.' We're still looking at different ideas and still trying to be hopeful, and know it's very important," Keyser said. "Hopefully, this is also going to be a character development. We have those extra activities to make kids better people, and so hopefully they're going to be a lot gained. They're going to use this the rest of their lives of how they handle this disappointment, how they get through it and how they encouraged and stay positive."