The Latest: Masks, small groups recommended for youth sports

Sports

FILE – A student athlete runs a drill during a strength and conditioning camp at Arlington Martin High School Thursday, June 18, 2020, in Arlington, Texas. Texas will play high school football this fall, but some of it will be delayed, fans will be limited and masks will be required as the state fights a surge in new coronavirus cases, hospitalizations and fatalities. The University Interscholastic League on Tuesday, July 21, 2020 released its guidelines for Texas public high school fall sports, pushing back the start of the football and volleyball seasons for the largest schools by one month into late September and extending the football championships for those schools into January. (AP Photo/LM Otero, file)

The Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:

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The American Academy of Pediatrics has announced new recommendations for youth sports during the pandemic to minimize risks of COVID-19.

They include masks for young athletes in non-vigorous activities when social distancing isn’t possible, practicing in small pods that don’t switch players and not sharing equipment.

Because the virus spreads most easily with prolonged, close contact with an infected person, risks to young athletes will likely depend on the type of sport, number of players and indoor versus outdoor setting, the academy said, adding, “Risk can be decreased but not eliminated, by athletes, parents, coaches and officials following safety protocols.”

The academy posted the guidance online Wednesday.

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The University of North Carolina says men’s basketball coach Roy Williams and his wife, Wanda, donated more than $600,000 to fund scholarships for spring-sports seniors who are returning for another year after the coronavirus pandemic cut short the 2019-20 season.

The school said Thursday that the Williamses initially wanted to keep the May gift anonymous.

“He didn’t want those students to miss that experience and wanted to fund those scholarships for next year,” athletic director Bubba Cunningham said in a statement. “I still get chills when I think about his phone call and the impact it would have for dozens of our students.”

Williams, a Hall of Famer with three NCAA championships, is preparing for his 18th season at his alma mater.

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The Buffalo Bills are giving season ticket holders the option to have their money refunded or defer any payments made toward the 2021 season.

Those who choose to defer payments will maintain an opportunity to purchase a limited number of single-game tickets for this year, should fans be allowed to attend, the team wrote in a letter to season ticket holders on Thursday.

Season ticket holders will maintain their seniority for next season no matter which option they choose. Those choosing to keep their money in the account will also get subscriptions to NFL Game Pass and the NFL Network’s RedZone channel.

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The Diamond League track meet in Gateshead, England, has been canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic.

It is the fifth of the 15 meets in the series to be canceled. The event in London was also called off.

The Gateshead meet was originally scheduled for Aug. 16 and then moved to Sept. 12 before being canceled.

The first full Diamond League meet is currently set to be held on Aug. 14 in Monaco.

Exhibition meets have been organized remotely from Oslo and Zurich with athletes worldwide competing simultaneously in a few events.

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More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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