The day sports was cancelled

The day sports was cancelled
March 19
09:59 2020

A few weeks ago, the coronavirus or COVID-19 was just an afterthought for many Americans. Now, it’s front and center for everyone across the nation. COVID-19 has affected many parts of the social landscape to the point that all sports have been postponed or cancelled on all levels.

I’ll admit that I did not see it getting to this point. We have seen several pandemic scares over the past two decades, but it has never reached this level of hysteria. COVID-19 will change the lives of many individuals on all levels in the world of sports.

The cancelling of the winter and spring sports was not something I thought was even on the horizon. I was not under the impression that this pandemic was truly that serious, but obviously I was incorrect in that assumption.  

As a sports junkie, I am saddened by not having any sports to watch on TV. With March Madness, the end of the NBA regular season, the Masters and the NFL draft coming up, it’s a bad time to cancel sports.

As a sports journalist, it also makes my job a bit more difficult, not having anything to cover, but to be honest, that is not the biggest thing I am upset about. Yes, I love professional sports, but the young people in high school and college will suffer the most. Professional athletes will resume their seasons at some point, but the same cannot be said for high school and college athletes.

For high school athletes, this is a pivotal time for some who are attempting to obtain a college scholarship. With the cancellation of sports for the foreseeable future, the lives of some of these young people will be negatively affected.

Those high-profile high school players are secure with their college options, but those who are not Power 5 players may not have the opportunity to have more tape on them to impress a college coach.

I didn’t have to look far for an example of how this decision could have affected an athlete. I ran track in high school, but only for my senior year. For me, the track season started in early December of my senior year, but it was not until the spring that I started to garner some attention from college coaches. From March through June of my senior year was when I put up the necessary times that got me into college.

If this would have taken place during my senior year of high school, I may not have had the chance to run those races and in turn, I would not have possibly made it into college. I’m sure there are thousands of athletes across the nation that are feeling the same pressure. I feel for those athletes, mostly because 20 years ago, I was them. 

My prayer is that we get back to playing sports sooner rather than later, so these young men and women will have the opportunity to show what they can do.

The virus has also cancelled many championship games for those same high school athletes. Having the opportunity to be a state champion is something many of these athletes have been working toward for years. For some athletes, it may be the last time they step foot on the court or field. My heart goes out to those athletes.

On the college level, COVID-19 could affect the lives of those athletes as well. The NCAA tournament is one of the biggest sporting events in the country. People who are not even college basketball fans become invested just so they can fill out one of those brackets to see if they can predict the eventual champion or win a pool at work.

Many of those athletes are hoping for a professional career. March Madness has created a lot of legends during this time, so without the tournament, players can’t shine on the biggest stage. The first player that comes to mind as to how the NCAA tournament enhanced their draft status was Dwayne Wade.

While at Marquette, Wade was a good player, but it was the tournament that allowed him to show what he could do against the best talent in the country. Wade lifted Marquette all the way to the Final Four and propelled him to the No. 5 pick in the draft. Wade would have been a lottery pick that year, but it definitely was the tournament that elevated him. Too bad players won’t have that chance this year to do the same.

Let’s hope COVID-19 does not ruin the season for these young athletes and that soon they can get back to doing what they love.

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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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