Alabama summer no match for football

Published 4:10 pm Wednesday, August 30, 2023

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An Editorial Opinion of The Lowndes Signal

School is back in session and teams are returning to the field for their 2023 football season. And, while a return to the classroom and athletic programs inspires images of fans huddling under blankets on stadium bleachers, coaching staff and administrators are taking measures to beat the heat and keep students cool and hydrated.

Tri-county residents have turned out for one or two of the first few games. Many Alabama Independent School Association (AISA) teams took the field last week and public-school teams stepped onto the gridiron for their first games Friday or will do so this week.

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Unfortunately, no one told Alabama weather to flip the switch from summer to fall, and fans in Butler, Lowndes and Crenshaw counties expect temperatures nearing the triple-digits for the next few days.

Butler County Schools released information about steps being taken to mitigate the heat and ensure safety for students and staff. Those steps include conducting physical education classes inside and delaying game time for football players.

The Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA) ruled teams can delay game start times to as late as 8 p.m. Some schools, like McKenzie, are taking advantage of that opportunity by delaying game time until 7:30 p.m., when the temperature is slightly cooler.

Schools and teams around the area are looking out for the safety of student athletes, providing plenty of ice, water and hydration to keep players cool and healthy.

We appreciate their efforts to maintain the football programs community members find so important, without sacrificing the safety of student athletes.

Our staff is ready to cover these games. We’ll be in the stands with you, cheering our teams to victory. Fans are also welcome to send us your snapshots of the games. We can’t be at every match, but we are eager to share the news of our teams’ successes.