RIO HONDO, Texas (KVEO) — Football season for Rio Hondo Independent School District (ISD) has been cut short after school officials asked the Texas Education Agency (TEA) for an extension to delay face-to-face instruction.
“Our board rule of this whole thing has been that you have to be face-to-face in order to do extracurricular activities so with that start date moving to that date it essentially ended our football season,” said Rocky James, Rio Hondo High School Athletic Director/ Head Football Coach.
After a number of reports circulating on social media that Rio Hondo ISD canceled all fall sports. Coach James says some sports are still happening.
“Fall sports are not canceled,” he said. “We will continue doing volleyball when we come back face-to-face, we will continue doing tennis and cross country and all the other sports passed that.”
With athletes not able to play football this season, local restaurants that rely on those Friday night lights will also feel its effect.
“It’s a Friday night and everybody wants to go [out] nobody wants to go home and nobody wants to go home and cook or anything like that…with the lack of football games there will be a reduction in sales on Friday nights,” said Roberto Lucio Jr., co-owner of Pizza Express.
Lucio says his restaurant is not the only one which will feel the economic impact.
“Certainly the Stripes because the Stripes is really close to the stadium over there but I think the entire town is going to feel a pinch,” said Lucio.
Coach James adds while the district might see a financial hit from the games, he stands by the decision to delay in-person instruction.
Rio Hondo ISD was supposed to start on September 28. Their new start date for face-to-face instruction is now October 26.