NCHSAA releases amended guidelines

Chapel Hill, NC – NC Phase 2.5 went into effect Friday, September 4, at 5 pm.  In this phase, mass gathering numbers have increased.  Effective September 8, NCHSAA member schools can abide by those numbers: 

  • a total of 25 persons in an indoor venue;
  • a total of 50 persons in outdoor venues. 

All other sport-specific guidelines remain as indicated in the Modified Skill Development document.  As always, your school/LEA may be more restrictive with guidelines and regulations.

Northwood High School football field (photo by Gene Galin)

The NCHSAA Board of Directors has also been busy reviewing the recommendations from staff and the Ad Hoc Committee relative to the 2020-2021 Sports Calendar.  In a videoconference meeting on Wednesday, September 2, 2020, Modified Sports Regulations and an updated calendar, to include playoff dates, were unanimously approved by Board members.

In addition to playoff dates, the following changes were approved:

  • Increase season limitation from 10 to 14 meets for Swimming, Cross-Country, and Track & Field
  • The date for the cheerleading invitational changed from May 1, 2021 to May 22, 2021
Click to enlarge

2020-2021 NCHSAA Modified Sports Regulations

  1. Dead Periods:

a.There will be a3-day dead period for all out-of-season sports beginning the first day of each season/tryout period.
b.The last five (5) student days of the 1st semester and the last ten (10) student days of 2nd semester remain in place. Note: NCHSAA rules allow in-season sports to continue.

2. Team & Individual Sport Scrimmages:

a.The current NCHSAA Handbook policy regarding pre-season scrimmages in all sports remain in place.
The following are exceptions:
i.Multi-team (more than 2 teams) scrimmages are not allowed at any time.
1.Only two (2) teams allowed on site at any given time per sport
ii.All Sports -Maximum of one (1) scrimmage, limited to two (2) hours)

3.Contest Season Limitation Adjustment(from originally approved allowances):

a.Season limitation increased to 14 meets in Swimming, Cross-Country, and Track & Field

4. Weekly Limitation Adjustment

a.One (1) weather-related postponed contest may be played in a week that will not count towards weekly limitation
i.To exceed the weekly limitation, any other postponements due to extenuating circumstances must be approved by the NCHSAA
Note: Per handbook policies, daily limitations are in effect

5. Conference Tournament Procedures:

a. Individual Sports
i.One (1) conference tournament/meet that does not count toward season/weekly limitation,allowing all conference member schools to compete
ii. # of participants per sport TBD
b. Team Sports
i. A conference tournament/meet may be conducted in accordance with all weekly and seasonal limitations
1.Note: If a conference tournament is held, the two (2) teams that advance to the conference tournament championship contest will be allowed one (1) additional contest that is not subject to the weekly/seasonal limitations

6. Team Sport Playoffs:

a.Conference Requirement
i.In order to be eligible for a team sport playoff berth, all schools must fully participate in conference competition as determined by each individual conference
b.Bracket Size
i.All team sport playoffs will be 32-team brackets September 8, 2020
ii.Football will be subdivided into two 16-team brackets for each classification
b.Automatic Qualification Process (based on number conference teams participating in the sport)
i.Conference teams will qualify into the playoffs as follows:
1. 1-6 Teams in the Conference= 1 Automatic Berth
2. 7-8 Teams in the Conference= 2 Automatic Berths
3. 9+ Teams in the Conference= 3 Automatic Berths Note:Split conferences based on its half of the split
i.Conference winning percentage will determine wildcard spots/teams Note:Will utilize previous methods that have been in place for wrestling and tennis, i.e. no “leap-frogging”ruled.Bracketing
i.Predetermined brackets will be used for the playoffs in an effort to minimize travel for qualifying teams Note:Will utilize previous methods that have been in place for wrestling and tennis, i.e. no “leap-frogging”rule(exception: lacrosse)

7.Regular Season Regulations for Individual Sports:

i.Maximum of four (4) schools per contest
ii.Four (4) schools per contest -teams are limited to seven (7) individuals
iii.Three (3) schools per contest -teams are limited to nine(9) individuals
iv.Two (2) schools per contest -teams are limited to fourteen(14) individuals
i.Boys and girls are allowed to practice together
ii.Triple Bogey Rule
iii.Dual Match: Teams are limited to five (5) individuals
iv.Tri-Match: Max of 15 boys and 15 girls total
v.Quad-Match: Max of 20 boys and 20 girls total
c.Swimming & Diving
i.Virtual Meets allowed
1.Must compete against another school during the same week
2.Exhibition heats are allowed
ii.In-Person Meets
1.Dual Meets
a.Limited to participating athletes + one (1) alternate per relay
2.Tri-Meets: Max 30 boys total and 30 girls total
3.Exhibition heats are not allowed
i.Boys and girls are allowed to practice simultaneously when both seasons overlap
ii.Maximum of two (2) teams per contest September 8, 2020
iii.Teams are limited to participating athletes (plus 2 alternates if only 6 competing)
1.Individual Regional and State Tournament Only;Dual Team Championships will not be conducted this year
e.Track & Field
i.Maximum of four (4) schools per contest
ii.Teams are limited to participating athletes + one (1) alternate per relay
i.Maximum of two (2) tri-meets per week
ii.Tournaments not allowed
iii.“Head to Head”competition only
iv.Teams are limited to participating athletes
v.Playoffs1.Individual Regional and State Tournament only;Dual Team Championships will not be conducted this year
a.Wrestle backs will not be allowed in regional andstate championship tournament

All linked documents are available on the 2020-2021 Modified Guidelines webpage.