With the CIF deciding to delay the start of the high school football season until Jan. 8 because of uncertainty and safety concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic, families are going to need to find a substitute plan for what to do on Friday nights this fall.
Let’s call it Friday Night Lights revised.
Among the possible alternatives:
• Subscribe to Hulu and watch all five seasons of the TV series, “Friday Night Lights.”
• Make Friday night a family night to watch your favorite sports movie. The candidates: “Blindside”; “Remember the Titans”; “Hoosiers”; “Mighty Ducks”; “Field of Dreams.”
• Stream seven-on-seven football games from your nearest park. By October and November, if county health departments give approval, seven-on-seven passing competitions could be possible.
• Friday night barbecue. Yes, get some use of the backyard with fun, games, hot dogs and flag football. Break out the trampoline. Invite your friends. Play your high school fight song or favorite college fight song. Maybe invite the Trojan horse to drop by.
• “Fortnite” challenge. Teenagers love video games, so Friday night could be the time for online gamer competitions.
• Zoom fun. Talks by coaches can be boring watching from your computer screen or cellphone, but it’s time for a little innovation. Put the coach on your 60-inch TV screen. Let mom and dad, brother and sister join in. Start a trivia game. Come up with rewards, like a school mask, parking space or pizza party for the winner.
• Periscope Live. There’s some teenagers dreaming of becoming sports broadcasters, so why not go live on Twitter’s Periscope on Friday night with your own sports talk show, inviting your famous friends to join you for interviews.
• Friday night workout. Open the weight room for athletes to take out their frustration with every bench press to prepare for the season ahead. Mom and dad can supply the cupcakes like youth days.
• Friday night learning. Coaches can invite an entrepreneur, pro or college football alumnus, guest teacher or inspirational speaker to offer words of wisdom via a video conference.
• Cheerleader/band night. Invite the cheerleaders, dance team and marching band to put on a remote concert streamed live and unveil a hype video for the 2021 season.