Pa. Secretary of Health Rachel Levine: Gov. Wolf won't stop PIAA if fall sports go forward

Erie Times-News (TNS)
Pennsylvania Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine.

Pennsylvania Secretary of Health Rachel Levine reaffirmed her position and Gov. Tom Wolf's position Tuesday that high school and recreational sports should not be played until at least Jan. 1, 2021.

However, Levine said that Wolf does not plan to mandate high school sports' closure if the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association opts to go forward Friday.

"The recommendation from the governor and myself is that all school sports be postponed until Jan.1 and that would include school sports and also recreational sports and club sports," Levine said. "I think the governor has been very clear about this recommendation, and we've been consistent in terms of how we are describing it as a recommendation."

Levine also spoke about the upcoming PIAA meeting on Friday when the PIAA will vote on whether to move forward against Wolf's strong recommendation not to have sports or to cancel fall sports.

Levine was asked if Wolf would possibly come back with a mandate to not play sports if the PIAA votes to go ahead with the seasons.

"The governor has been very clear about that," Levine said. "There are no plans to do that."

Levine also cited the recent postponements by major college sports conferences and schools.

"I think it's really important to take the same lessons about COVID-19 that Penn State took, the Big 10 took, the Pac-12 took and that school sports be postponed as well as recreational sports," she said.

High school teams throughout Pennsylvania have been practicing under COVID-19 restrictions, but the PIAA voted on Aug. 7 to delay the falls seasons for at least two weeks to review the situation and Wolf's recommendation.