MHSAA’s Uyl Urges Quick Decisions Regarding Winter Contact Sports
MHSAA Executive Director Mark Uyl held a press conference Friday to provide an update on winter contact sports.
There is still no answer on when boys and girls basketball, ice hockey, wrestling and competitive cheer can begin competition, but Uyl said there have been improvements with the communication with the new Director of Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, Elizabeth Hertel.
“We firmly believe that now is the time to take the next step to allow those four winter sports, for those contact practices to begin immediately and for winter competition to also begin immediately as well,” Uyl said. “The previous four days of communication this week with the health department has been better than it probably has been in the previous four months.”
Uyl also answered questions along the lines of data. In the fall sports postseason, they tested 5,376 individuals with the rapid COVID-19 testing program, with 57 people testing positive, or 1.1%. Overall, around 30,000 tests were administered with 99.8% of those tests coming back negative.
“Getting that data and information in front of the decision makers is something that we are continuing to push,” Uyl said.
He was also asked about choosing to not testify in front of the Michigan House Oversight Committee on Thursday, where student-athletes, administrators and parents all testified on the restrictions on winter sports affecting students. He said he didn’t want to take away from their voices.
“It’s been reinvigorating this week to see so many within that community to really speak out, to really ask those pointed direct questions of what are the numbers that are preventing us from playing now and what do the numbers have to look like for us to continue,” Uyl said.