No spitting, no handshakes at Iowa high school football games this year

BOONE, Iowa- High School football players will not be allowed to spit or shake hands during games this fall.

Those are two of many COVID-19 recommendations from the Iowa High School Athletic Association.

The Association also says during pre-game workouts and drills, players must be six feet apart, and huddles with players should be avoided. Workouts should be done in small groups, or pods, with the same students working out together. Players are also to be divided into different areas to limit contact, including locker rooms. The team box will be expanded, so players and coaches can spread out.

The IHSSA says the recommendations also apply to the coin toss, those taking part must be socially distanced.

It's also recommended that players and coaches use hand sanitizer frequently. Football games will include an "Official's time out" every 4 minutes, for sanitizing and hydration.

Face masks are encouraged but will not be required. The IHSSA recommends those worn should be a solid color. Players are also required to keep their mouth guards in their mouths at all times, and each time they touch it, they should sanitize their hands.

Players should use water to drink only, not for cooling off, and the game ball should be cleaned and sanitized throughout the game.

Home and visiting team benches and other areas that have been used will be cleaned and sanitized after the game, including the stands, locker rooms, training rooms, restrooms, concession stands and press box.

There are additional recommendations for officials.

Another big key this year for high school football, the season has been trimmed to 7 games, instead of 9.

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