Good to be back, regardless of the state of sports
It’s good to be back!!!
For those of you that were unaware, I have been on hiatus from the sports desk for the past month. The blame for that hiatus, COVID-19.
No, I did not contract the virus, thank God!!! Rather, I was furloughed because of budget cutbacks during the unprecedented times we live in.
At the time that I was laid off, I really did not know if I would be back banging away at the keyboard as soon as this. I was truly expecting to be off at least until August, if not longer.
But, here I am, once again trying to piece together some type of sports page for those that want the world of sports back in proper working order.
The problem is, we really do not have any idea when sports in this country, or any other country, will find its way back to normalcy. The fact is, there may be a new “normal’ when it comes to sporting events until the Coronavirus situation gets cleared up.
Already the pandemic has wiped out all LHSAA spring sports along with the back half of the NBA and NHL seasons. Major League Baseball is on hold, the Olympics has been postponed as have two of the major tournaments on the PGA tour.
We have been reduced to watching games from years past and virtual NASCAR races on TV. (Can someone please tell me how a game from 2019 is considered an ESPN Classic!!??).
Heck, even youth baseball and softball has been placed on the back burner until we get a hold on how to manage the next phase of living with this pandemic.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver has set the date of May 1 as the earliest that the league would make decisions on if or when the remaining season games could resume.
MLB officials are weighing in on the possibility of beginning the season somewhere between mid-May and June. They are even considering playing all of the games in Arizona at a number of spring training sites with no fans present.
The worry now is how will the virus effect the NFL, NCAA and LHSAA football seasons. As of today, no players, regardless if they are professional or not, can be at team facilities to train.
I spoke with a couple of Evangeline Parish head football coaches just the other day about their thoughts on the upcoming season and the preparation needed for playing. All of them were concerned about having enough time to get their respective teams ready to start the season on time.
There is a strong possibility that if the Governor’s office puts restrictions on student-athletes having the ability to start re-using the school’s facilities, the high school football season may be delayed.
Unfortunately, the seniors of 2020 that participated in spring sports have been denied their opportunity to finish out their careers. Now, the seniors of 2021 may have to face the fact that some part of their final year on the gridiron may be reduced.
Of course, we won’t know anything until after April 30 when the stay-at-home order is supposed to be lifted. The chance that the order is extended is still viable.
There is no doubt that life is more precious than sports. I would be stupid not to think so.
However, sports brings most Americans a little relief from there everyday lives. It gives them a chance to put aside the grind of making their way in the world and focus on something else.
Sports, especially in the world of our youths, is a way to learn socialization skills and to get out and expend pent up energy. For all of us that have made our way through the different sports organizations as a kid, there is nothing more satisfying than being out on a freshly cut field of grass or hear the bouncing of a ball on a gym floor.
Hopefully, we will get back to what we consider “normal” in the world of sports.
Until then, I will try to keep you informed on what sports news there is. (No virtual sports, I promise!!!)