WEIDMAN \u2013 It was a busy fall for former Chippewa Hills coach Jim Novar and it\u2019s not likely to be a dull winter either. Novar is an assigner of referees and officials for area high school events, and it\u2019s obviously been a challenge keeping up with changing events during the COVID pandemic. Looking at the fall season, \u201cgenerally speaking, when it\u2019s all over with, we got through it,\u201d Novar said. \u201cIt was a matter of making changes all the time. We made a lot of changes. John Mayer helps me with football. He was busy all the time, changing games. \u201cWe had the COVID issue so we were moving games around, moving officials around. It was a busy time of the year for us.\u201d Volleyball, Novar said, \u201cgot compromised quite a bit. A lot of schools do tournaments for fund-raisers. It helps their programs They can make $1,000 to $1,500 on a Saturday hosting a tournament. But the state did away with all tournaments. All they could do is host quads.\u201d The MHSAA usually takes care of assigning officials for postseason tournaments. \u201cIn baseball and softball the assigner does the district,\u201d Novar said. \u201cFor basketball and football, the state has always done it. But this year, the assigners did the first two rounds of the football season because they had more rounds than they normally have. Then we jump out and (MHSAA) takes care of it.\u201d The winter season was coming along for assigning officials, but state health department officials put a lockdown on sports. Speculation is sports practices won't return until mid-January at the earliest for winter sports, with competition to start in late January. \u201cThe winter is going to be very interesting,\u201d Novar said. \u201cAs far as the CSAA goes, we\u2019re pretty solid, we have our January schedule. If we start January, we\u2019re solid. It\u2019s going to be like a conference schedule. Nonconference games probably no longer exist this year.\u201d The state has extended the pause to mid-January and what the schedule will look like remains to be seen. In December, Novar started scheduling umpires for area baseball and softball games. \u201cI\u2019m scheduling all year round,\u201d he said. .