In its first announcement since summer workouts began Monday, the GHSA updated its restriction on group sizes Thursday. But the change won't make a huge difference for teams that have already started working out, including all four local football programs.
On its website, the governing body revealed that conditioning and weightlifting groups, which were limited to 20 individuals during this initial week, can include up to 25 players and coaches, beginning next week.
However, the rule only applies to new athletes, otherwise known as those who haven't worked out thus far. For example, if a football player (or a coach, for that matter) has been on vacation and comes out Monday for their first workout of the summer, they can join any established group.
Players and coaches still cannot switch groups. Any athlete or coach who attended a workout this past week is tied to that group for the duration of this phase.
Aside from individual additions to existing groups, the biggest beneficiaries to Thursday's update are teams that haven't yet started workouts.
That includes all sports teams in some nearby counties. While in Bartow County, it lets a handful of fall sports teams start off with 25 individuals if they begin workouts next week, possibly allowing some to fit everybody within one group.
As noted by the GHSA, all other rules and regulations remain the same, including the ban on sport-specific equipment.