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What will the return of college sports look like?

As things start to stabilize with the COVID-19 situation, we are all anxious and wondering when and how our beloved sports seasons will be finally back.

What will the return of college sports look like?

The truth is that every place is facing different stages, as we see many cities around the world slowly getting back to normal, there are many other that are still under extreme protective measures due to this pandemic.

With that being said, the NCAA has recently pronounced about the current situation: “For each member institution, that return will come at a different time and will certainly take a different form” declared NCAA’s Director of Communication, Stacey Osburn. 

NCAA established the COVID-19 Advisory Panel, which brings together specialized professionals from different areas of health and has the mission of helping with their vision and assisting the NCAA member schools regarding the precautions and the Coronavirus situation.

According to NCAA Chief Medical, Dr. Brian Hainline the Advisory Panel is active and they are monitoring closely the outbreak in order to give the best recommendations on competition based and still follow all the health guidelines. The Advisory Panel has also released the “Core Principles of Resocialization of Collegiate Sport”. Once the COVID-19 cases have decreased considerably for a certain period of time, there is a chance of sports be back, however, a few precautions of resocialization must be followed: “It is also important to take into consideration that there will not be a quick, single day of re-emergence into society. We will re-emerge in a manner that recognizes COVID-19 will be around until there is an effective vaccine, treatment, or both. That is why resocialization should be rolled out in a phased way that helps assure sustained low infection spread, as well as aids in the ability to quickly diagnose and isolate new cases” said Hainline.

Last Monday (4th of May), ITA CEO Tim Russell and a panel of coaches gathered online for an open discussion about their expectations and plans for the following months. The panel counted with Claire Pollard (Northwestern University), David Roditi (TCU), Lauren Conching (Hawai’i Pacific University), Pam Rende (Arcadia University), Chase Hodges (Georgia Gwinnett), and Dash Connell (TJC). 

The discussion followed a positive scenario for the upcoming season, as they exposed the challenges they faced but also the positive effects, such as the recruitment process. Coach Conching revealed she is more dedicated to the recruitment process as she has more time to read and answer more emails, schedule calls, and connect with recruits all over the world. Besides the good news that recruitment keep going on, TCU’s Men’s Coach David Roditi also shared a few tips with the future recruits; be proactive, communicate, build a relationship and take the extra time to research more, these little things will put you ahead.

On the other hand, coaches also highlighted the fact that due to the changes and NCAA granting an extra year of eligibility, they are being more selective and taking a little longer to make an offer. 

Finally, the board finished in a high note as all coaches believe they will be back for the Fall season, of course with a few adjustments in the program and maybe a restriction regarding their competitions, try to keep more local and following all the protocols.

As overall things are slowly but surely starting to fall in place and stabilizing, we all needed to hear good news and maintaining a positive sight to keep moving towards the future.

“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” - Arthur Ashe

 

Nathalia Sato
USP Certified Advisor



REFERENCES

The Official Site of the NCAA, 6 May 2020, www.ncaa.org/about/resources/media-center/news/what-will-return-ncaa-sports-look.

The Official Site of the NCAA, 6 May 2020, www.ncaa.org/about/resources/media-center/news/what-will-return-ncaa-sports-look.

The Official Site of the NCAA, 6 May 2020, http://www.ncaa.org/sport-science-institute/core-principles-resocialization-collegiate-sport

ITA CEO Tim Russell & Coaches Discussion Panel: Eligibility, Recruiting and the Future of College Tennis

 

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