LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Dale Zorn on Thursday applauded the executive orders from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and a vote of the Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) Representative Council to allow high school sports to be played this fall, including football.
“I am pleased that the governor and the MHSAA listened to all of us and have decided to give our high school student athletes the opportunity to play the sports they love and compete to be the best they can be,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “In addition to having fun and staying in shape, students in sports learn important lessons about teamwork, leadership and perseverance.”
Last Friday, Zorn participated in a “Let Them Play” rally on the steps of the state Capitol with coaches, parents, student athletes and supporters to urge the governor and the MHSAA to allow state high schools to play sports this fall.
“The process has been a very emotional roller coaster for everyone involved, more importantly the student-athletes,” said Rob Beaudrie, Erie Mason High School football head coach. “The support of the parents, coaches, ADs and superintendents has been outstanding to say the least. All these athletes have just witnessed how to never give up and settle and fight for what you believe in. A very, very important life lesson.”
Jayme Ansel McElvany, founder of the Let Michigan high school football play Facebook group and whose son plays for Milan High School, said, “My son is ecstatic! He never truly believed that this could happen. Even more than him getting his football back, I am thankful that he got to see how people stood up for their rights, fought for what they believed in, and trusted God through it all. I am even more happy for the other kids and families in this state than I am for my own! I can only imagine the smiles, tears and screams across the state right now, and it makes all of this so worth it.”
“I am so thankful for all of the parents who came together for the kids! It’s great to know we still live in a society where ‘We the People’ still have a voice,” said Stacy Johnson, superintendent of Britton Deerfield Schools. “Senator Zorn was with us in this fight from the beginning, and I am very grateful for the support and help for our children. This is the time of their lives!”
As a result of Thursday’s actions, high school football teams can start practicing next week and play games starting Sept. 18. Volleyball, boys soccer and girls swimming and diving can begin Wednesday, Sept. 9 when gyms and pools are allowed to reopen statewide.