The Bridgeport schools have reversed course and will be playing varsity boys and girls basketball this season in the FCIAC.
FCIAC commissioner Dave Schulz confirmed that he has begun working on another league schedule — his fourth — including the three Bridgeport schools: Bassick, Central and Harding. It will be varsity only, Schulz said.
The city had canceled the season last week.
“It was one of the (Bridgeport) ADs who called me (Schulz declined to mention which one) on behalf of the administration to see if they could still get games,” said Schulz, indicating the call came around 4 p.m. “I can actually say I wasn’t surprised. I always thought they might change their minds. … If those kids are given the opportunity to play basketball, we will do anything we can do to make that work for them.”
Stamford and Westhill also got clearance Friday afternoon to return to play. Schulz said he is waiting on the Norwalk and Fairfield districts to see when they start practicing.
“I’m confident we will have all 18 teams playing,” Schulz said.
Bassick boys coach Bernie Lofton said he received a call from his athletic director, Pat O’Rourke, that the season was back on.
“The phone has been ringing like crazy ever since,” Lofton said. “The kids are ecstatic. I’m happy for them and I’m glad everybody came together.”
Both Lofton and Harding boys coach Lamar Kennedy confirmed all of the city’s boys and girls coaches met with Bridgeport superintendent Michael Testani Friday morning about the hopes of reversing the decision.
“We were told that he didn’t cancel the season, we were on pause and (Testani) reiterated that point,” Kennedy said. “He didn’t indicate which way he was leaning.”
Lofton said practice would begin Monday and he would be “stressing safety, academics and being responsible.”
The FCIAC season is scheduled to begin Feb. 10. Teams are supposed to have at least 15 practices before playing an actual game.