AUSTIN — On Tuesday, the University Interscholastic League moved a step closer to limiting full contact football practices to 90 minutes a week.
An amendment was passed by the UIL’s Legislative Council this week that would limit football teams to no more than 90 minutes total of full contact practice per week. This was the second step in getting the amendment put into use, after the UIL’s Medical Advisory Committee recommended the amendment in April.
Every one of the Medical Advisory Committee’s previous recommendations has been approved in the past. The amendment must now be approved by the commissioner of education.
If approved there, the new rules would go into effect starting Aug. 5, when teams who did not participate in spring football can begin practice. Both Nederland and Port Neches-Groves will start then, while Port Arthur Memorial will begin on Aug. 12.
Area coaches who spoke to The News in April said the amendment shouldn’t change how they practice much. None of them said they practiced for 90 minutes full-contact last season and some said they had never practiced that much at any coaching stop.
The key is the definition of “full contact,” which, according to the amendment, is “game speed, blocking and tackling to the ground.”