Lorena football (copy)

Lorena offensive linemen work on blocking techniques during a practice last August. The UIL announced that public schools could start summer conditioning on June 8, after a nearly three-month layoff due to COVID-19.

Public school athletic programs will be able to get back to live, on-campus workouts starting June 8, the University Interscholastic League announced Tuesday.

In an email sent to the state’s athletic directors and coaches, UIL athletic director Susan Elza referenced Governor Greg Abbott’s Monday declaration that sports leagues could return on May 31 provided they followed social distancing guidelines.

“We are currently, and have been, working with the appropriate state officials to allow schools to begin limited summer strength and conditioning on June 8, 2020,” Elza said. “As soon as we have the details of that plan, we will release them to schools to allow time to plan and prepare for bringing students back to campus for these purposes. We hope to have those details released to you this week.”

The UIL suspended all activities on March 13 in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. Officials worked on potential scenarios for a return, but ultimately canceled all remaining spring sports and state championship events on April 17.

Coaches all over the area greeted the news of a return to workouts as a promising sign for a fall football and athletic season.

“Here we go! If you haven’t been staying ready you better get after it now,” tweeted Clifton athletic director and head football coach Chuck Caniford.

Meanwhile, earlier Tuesday, the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools – the state’s largest governing body for private school athletics — conducted a football webinar where it announced that it would allow for summer conditioning programs to start June 1, with a limit of no more than four participants per coach.

TAPPS athletic director Robert Huckabee said during the webinar that weight rooms, gyms and indoor facilities would remain closed to students for athletic and fitness activities in accordance with the Department of State Health Services. However, outdoor activities like wind sprints and calisthenics would be allowed.

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