PRICHARD, Ala (WALA) -- A popular high school rivalry football game between Vigor and Blount has been postponed because of COVID-19.
The Battle of Prichard has been called off as two Blount players have tested positive for the coronavirus.
“We knew that this was going to happen and it’s going to happen and so we’re going to have to take it day by day week for week and plan accordingly and at the end of the day we have to do what’s right for our kids and their health and safety,” said Rena Philips with the Mobile County Public School System.
The district is following Alabama High School Athletic Association rules, meaning the team and the coaches are quarantined for 14 days plus an additional 5 days for acclimation back to school.
The last time the players were on campus was on August 13th.
“We’re going to follow the guidelines set forth by the health department every single time and we’d rather err on the side of being safe than not,” Philips said.
The school district hopes to reschedule the Battle of Prichard at a later date, until then the game counts as a forfeit.
Despite this game’s cancelation, there is still plenty of Friday Night Lights action, but the health department is not so sure about hitting the field.
“It’s incredibly challenging for me to think for me to think about holding a Friday Night Lights game and being able to maintain all of those public health measures about social distancing and wearing a mask,” said Dr. Rendi Murphree from the Mobile County Health Department.
The school system says the positive cases at Blount are not deterring them.
Philips says they are continuing with precautions in place and still have plans to continue playing football this season.
“We’re not requiring anyone to come to football,” she said. “We had meetings with all the parents and the students involved to let them know the risks involved with there being a pandemic.”
In recent weeks, football teams at St. Lukes and UMS Wright have had to quarantine because of the coronavirus.
Blount’s next game they can play is on September 4th at Baldwin County High School.