May 25, 2024

OC Sports Zone: Community First

CIF official explains early start date for football openers; practice dates

High school football practice is beginning this week for many Orange County squads in preparation for the season openers.

Most Irvine and Tustin football squads will open the season with zero week games on Friday, Aug. 17, which is earlier than in previous seasons.

“The CIF-SS seasons in the fall and winter that have moved have done so to come into line with the new CIF State championship dates,”  said Thom Simmons, assistant commissioner of the CIF Southern Section.

“The spring championship days that were adjusted were done so to come more into line with the changing school years as some schools have been out for more than a month by the time we have played our baseball and softball championships in the past.

As for football practice:

“The official start date for football practice by our member schools is determined by when your first contest/game is scheduled,” Simmons said. “If you have a zero week contest then a school’s first day of practice is Monday July 30, 2018. If your first contest is week one then your first day of practice is Monday Aug. 6.

“All schools must adhere to the 18-hour per week practice time rule beginning on the first day of official practice. The specific practice rules can be found in Blue Book bylaw 506.”

The season will also begin soon for girls volleyball, boys water polo and cross country teams, but there is no set starting date for practice, Simmons said.

“All other fall sports do not have an official start date for practice,” Simmons said. “They only have a start date for their first contest, therefore they can begin practice at whatever date they decide. Once they start practice they would also be bound to the 18-hour practice rule.”