High School football season is fast approaching and many wonder how the unhealthy smoky conditions our area has been covered in over the last couple weeks will affect games.
It’s a time of year like no other, football season. For many, there is a lot on the line.
“I think we can prove a lot of people wrong this year,” said Ian Crocker.
Crocker is a senior at Ballard High School. His first year with the team, they had a losing record. Last year, the team made it to the playoffs, but lost in the first round.
Crocker says this will be Ballard’s year.
“We’ve all been working hard. The school, people are talking about coming to games,” he said.
He says there is a positivity in the atmosphere for this season.
Unfortunately, that’s not the only thing in the atmosphere this season. Unhealthy air quality has forced the team inside for practice six times so far this season.
“We didn’t even have gym spaces, we were finding places in the hallway, working in the lunchroom, anywhere we could find space,” said Ross Humphries.
Humprhies is the head coach of Ballard High School football. He has been around the game his whole life, playing, and now coaching.
He says dealing with smoky conditions has never been in his playbook.
“Adversity that we had no idea was going to come up,” said Humphries.
Humprhies says this year has already been twice as bad as the smoky conditions from last year.
“We lost four practices just this week,” he said.
The biggest concern for these players and coaches is that the smoke will affect their games.
Smoke has been so bad this year, the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association has given schools permission to practice seven days a week, so these teams can make up on lost time and meet the requirements needed to actually play games.
Q13 News asked the WIAA what happens if games are canceled due to unhealthy air – we’re waiting on their response.