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Michigan high school sports now suspended under new state COVID order

Swimming and diving, volleyball, football tournaments suspended

The Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) has suspended its fall tournaments in response to a new public health order issued by state health officials on Sunday.

This includes the suspension girls volleyball, girls swimming and diving, and football tournaments, and all winter practices and competitions scheduled to begin over the next three weeks.

MHSAA said the volleyball and swimming and diving tournaments have one week remaining, with MHSAA finals for both previously scheduled for Nov. 21. The 11 and 8-Player Football Playoffs also are nearing their conclusions, with the 8-player postseason two games from completion and 11-player down to its final three rounds.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services issued the restrictions Sunday evening, and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer held a press briefing to make the announcement.

As of now, the restrictions are in place for three weeks -- from Wednesday (Nov. 18) through Dec. 8.

MHSAA Executive Director Mark Uyl said they will “explore options” for completing the fall tournament when restrictions are lifted.

“We understand the need for action, and we will explore all options to complete our Fall tournaments when restrictions are lifted," reads a statement from Uyl. "We will assess everything over the next three weeks relative to Fall and Winter sports and come up with a plan that keeps us connected to our goal, for months, of having three seasons that are played to their conclusions.”

The MDHHS’ order announced Sunday goes into effect on Wednesday, Nov. 18. Under the order, organized sports are no longer permitted, with the exception of professional sports and a select number of NCAA sports.

High school classes must now be conducted remotely under the order. Some high schools already were remote as the state had been leaving it up to local districts to decide. However, now all high schools in the state of Michigan cannot offer in-person classes under the order.

Read more about what’s covered by the MDHHS order here.

Interactive map shows COVID risk by event size in each Michigan county

One of the biggest challenges with containing COVID-19 is trying to limit gatherings -- and a new interactive tool shows just how risky it could be.

Researchers at Georgia Tech released a the “COVID-19 Risk Assessment Planning Tool,” a peer-reviewed resource that tells you the risk of being around someone with COVID-19, by the event size, in each U.S. county, in real-time.

According to the data, as of Nov. 13, at an event with 10 people, the risk of a person present with COVID-19 is 19% in Wayne County, 30% in Macomb County and 24% in Oakland County.

If that event is with 25 people, the risk increases to 41% in Wayne County, 59% in Macomb County and 37% in Oakland County.

At an event with 100 people, risk levels in pretty much every Michigan county surpasses 80%, including some at 99%, like Kent and Calhoun counties.


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