TSSAA vote results in maintaining two-week dead period for student-athletes

Staff file photo by C.B. Schmelter / Baylor's Gehrig Ebel, who has signed with Virginia Tech, had been a member of the Red Raiders' varsity baseball program since eighth grade, but he had his senior season wiped out by the coronavirus pandemic canceling most of the TSSAA spring sports schedule.

The TSSAA Legislative Council held a virtual meeting Thursday to determine whether to waive the annual two-week dead period, which prohibits athletes and teams from working out with coaches or on school grounds.

The vote ended in a 6-6 deadlock, which by TSSAA bylaws means the motion to suspend the dead period failed. The dead period, which this year begins June 22 and ends July 5, was implemented to allow student-athletes a predetermined time each year to be able to take family vacations or simply take a break from training and practicing for their chosen sports.

The meeting was called at the request of numerous coaches around the state who believed the dead period should be lifted this year after several months of not being allowed to gather for practices or workouts due to the coronavirus pandemic.