5A Volleyball State Championship

Victory Christian’s Ruthie Udoumoh and Liza Brown lead their team in a cheer before the Conquerors defeated Bishop Kelley in the 5A volleyball final at Catoosa on Oct. 22, 2019. Practice for the 2020 volleyball season is due to begin July 15. IAN MAULE/Tulsa World

A measure to suspend the dead period for 2020 is on the agenda for the Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association’s monthly board meeting. The teleconference starts at 9 a.m. Tuesday.

Other items in what could be an impactful meeting include a discussion of plans for fall activities and possible action to amend the 2020-21 OSSAA calendar as school districts across the state await further direction on restarting activities in the wake of COVID-19.

The dead period (June 27-July 5 this year) is a span when school facilities are closed and coaches are not allowed contact with their student-athletes.

It was enacted by the OSSAA to give athletes and their families a few days when they aren’t responsible to any school-sponsored activities.

The first dead period ran June 29-July 7, 2019. Administrators feel a dead period isn’t needed in 2020 because public schools effectively have been in a dead period since they were closed in March by the pandemic.

Many districts reopened their facilities Monday for voluntary conditioning work. Administrators feel it likely would be counterproductive to open now, close for nine days and then reopen so near to when practice begins for fall activities.

Preseason drills begin July 15 for cross county, fall baseball, fast pitch softball and volleyball. The first games in those sports are allowed Aug. 12.

OSSAA director David Jackson has said he favors suspending the dead period for 2020 but that it requires a vote of the OSSAA board.

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