24 Week Season & Frequency of Play
FREQUENCY OF PLAY LIMITS
Q: My institution still plans on reducing our schedule for each fall sport. As I cut my schedule, is there anything I need to know about the minimum number of games we need to play? (Update 10/05/2020)
Q: Soccer typically has three extra dates that are reserved for the spring term. We usually use these for scrimmages, but they could also be used for games. Can we use these spring dates to schedule three extra game days this spring before the championship? (Added 8/20/2020)
To ensure that the same general approach continues this year, the Athletics Directors Association recommended that for 2020-21 the three additional spring dates can remain but should be restricted to scrimmages only. The Council of Presidents Executive Committee approved this exception. This will ensure that all soccer teams will be limited to 18 games prior to postseason.
Q: The start dates provide a three-week period from first practice to first game. Are teams required to build in a three-week practice period before they’re allowed to have their first competition? For example, my golf team is scheduled to compete in a tournament on September 19. Am I required to make my golf team practice for three weeks prior to that date?
Please note that this structure intentionally builds in three weeks of practice in keeping with healthcare guidance as well as significant membership feedback. Accordingly, we would encourage institutions to ensure that any of NAIA teams are appropriately conditioned and acclimatized before returning to competition in the fall term.
Q: We have a large men’s soccer program and have a varsity and JV team. We always have the JV and varsity teams scrimmage each other before we start real games. Do we have to wait until September 5 for this?
As soon as you involve students or individuals who are not identified with your school (another school’s team, an adult men’s league soccer team, etc.), it can no longer be considered a practice. At that point, you must consider it a contest of some kind (scrimmage, exhibition or game), and these competitions cannot occur until September 5 (September 12 for football).
FORFEITS/ NO CONTESTS QUESTIONS
Q: Does this 50% threshold still apply to national championships? In other words, if less than 50% of women’s volleyball teams are still playing at the end of the regular season, does that mean there would not be a national championship?