Photo: Paul Rodriguez Orange County Register

Posted On: 02/20/21 6:26 PM

The California Department of Public Health updated its guidelines for youth and high school sports Friday which sparked optimism among high school football players, coaches and fans.

Under the new guidelines, high school football games may begin as early as March 11 if certain health conditions are met and safety protocols are in place.

The main adjustment was that outdoor, higher-contact sports like football, water polo, soccer and lacrosse are moving from the orange tier to the less restrictive red tier for play to be allowed.

In order for football to be played, the counties must have an adjusted rate equal to or less than 14 cases per 100,000 people. Orange County is already close to that goal with 16 cases per 100,000 as of Friday. Los Angeles County is at 17.6 and San Bernardino is at 19.

“We believe it’s backed by science,” Gov. Gavin Newsom said of the revisions in a press briefing. “But more important than anything else, we are confident that if we can resume, it will only help enliven the capacity of these kids to feel more engaged, feel more alive.”

CIF State Commissioner Rob Nocetti said that the state assured CIF that they would

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