What are the start dates for high school football in all 50 states? (latest updates)

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, every high school governing body in America has had to decide when it is safe to play football in their state. Some have elected to play as if it were a normal year (Utah), some have delayed start dates but will still play in 2020 (Texas) and some have moved football to 2021 (California).

Below is a quick overview followed by a specific list detailing every state’s decision on high school football. We will continue to keep this list updated as states adjust to the ongoing pandemic.

Here are the 35 states already playing football or scheduled to play football in 2020: Alaska, Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Idaho, Mississippi, Montana, Texas, Utah, Indiana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Tennessee, Iowa, Nebraska, Wyoming, Missouri, Ohio, Oklahoma, West Virginia, Georgia, Florida, Kansas, New Hampshire, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Maine, Wisconsin, South Carolina, New Jersey, Michigan, Delaware, Minnesota, Colorado and Louisiana.

Here are the states and districts that have officially moved high school football to 2021: California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Virginia, New Mexico, Nevada, Washington, Oregon, Illinois, Maryland, Hawaii, Rhode Island, New York and Vermont.


Alabama: Season underway (began Aug. 21)

Alaska: Season underway (began Aug. 20)

Arizona: Practices start Sept. 7 and games begin Sept. 30

Arkansas: Season underway (began Aug. 27)

California: Padded practices begin on Dec. 14 with games starting Jan. 8

Colorado: After initially moving football to 2021, schools were given the option to opt in to having a fall football season if they wanted.  218 schools will begin games on Oct. 8. 58 schools will play in the spring.

Connecticut: Cancelled for the fall, probably won’t happen in the spring.

Delaware: Delaware initially moved football to 2021, but the season will now begin Oct. 23.

District of Columbia: Practices begin Feb. 1 and games start Feb. 22.

Florida: Practices began Aug. 24 with games starting Sept. 4, but school districts in South Florida — which includes Miami-Dade and Broward counties — have been heavily impacted by COVID-19 and have not announced when they will allow their schools to start practice. Schools from those counties combined to win seven of eight football state championships last season.

Georgia: Games begin Sept. 3

Hawaii: Season moved to Jan. 2021

Idaho: Season underway (began Aug. 27)

Illinois: TBD, but some point in 2021

Indiana: Season underway (began Aug. 20)

Iowa: Season underway (began Aug. 27)

Kansas: Games begin Sept. 3

Kentucky: Games are scheduled to begin Sept. 11

Louisiana: Games are scheduled to begin Oct. 8, but that could change depending on COVID-19 case numbers in the state. The start of practice is TBD.

Maine: Practices begin Sept. 8 with games beginning Sept. 18, but those dates could change this week.

Maryland: TBD, but some point in 2021

Massachusetts: The high school football season will take place from Feb. 22-April 25.

Michigan: The season was moved to 2021, but that decision was changed when Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer adjusted an executive order that called for social distancing at all outdoor competitions. Games can now begin Sept. 18.

Minnesota: After initially opting for a 2021 season, Minnesota will have a six game season with games beginning Oct. 9

Mississippi: Games begin Sept. 3

Missouri: Season underway (began Aug. 28)

Montana: Season underway (began Aug. 27)

Nebraska: Season underway (began Aug. 27)

Nevada: Football practices begin Feb. 13 with games starting Mar. 5

New Hampshire: Games begin Sept. 3

New Jersey: Practices start Sept. 14, with games beginning Oct. 2

New Mexico: Football season begins Feb. 22

New York: Practices begin March 1, 2021

North Carolina: Football practices begin Feb. 8 with games starting Feb. 26

North Dakota: Season underway (Started Aug. 20)

Ohio: Season underway (Started Aug. 28)

Oklahoma: Season underway (Started Aug. 28)

Oregon: Practices can begin Feb. 22 and games start Mar. 15

Pennsylvania: Practices started Aug. 24. Games can begin Sept. 11

Rhode Island: TBD, but if there is a season, it will be in 2021

South Carolina: The South Carolina Independent School Association has started play, but teams in the South Carolina High School League start games Sept. 25, per 247Sports.com.

South Dakota: Season underway (Started Aug. 20)

Tennessee: Season underway (Started Aug. 20)

Texas: Teams in the 4A, 3A, 2A and 1A classes have started playing in Texas, but teams in 5A and 6A start games between Sept. 24 and Sept. 26

Utah: Season underway (Started Aug. 13)

Vermont: Schools in Vermont that want to play football in 2020 will play two hand touch seven-on-seven.

Virginia: Football practices begin on Feb. 4 with games starting Feb. 22.

Washington: Football will start practice Feb. 22 and will be eligible to play games the week of March 7

West Virginia: Games begin this week

Wisconsin: Practices begin Sept. 7 and games start Sept. 21, but schools can elect to play in the spring or break up their season between 2020 and 2021 if they’d prefer.

Wyoming: Season underway (Started Aug. 27)

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