Wow! What a week! Of course, the No. 1 topic on everyone’s mind — not only in the sports world — but across the globe is the coronavirus or COVID-19. And to say that this week has been a crazy one is an understatement.
The spread of the virus has caused President Trump to call for a state of emergency as it has already claimed the lives of many here in the United States.
Here in Mississippi, we haven’t had many cases to report, but we are certainly not downplaying anything, by any means.
Sports-wise, the Mississippi High School Athletic Association has announced that it has extended spring break for schools who had time off last week, thus joining the long list of sports in the pros, college and preps that have either pumped the breaks on their respective seasons or canceled them.
Prior to the MHSAA’s ruling over the weekend, I was able to cover a softball game Friday between North Pike and Bogue Chitto. Throughout the evening as the two teams battled it out, I kept telling myself, “I hope this isn’t the final game I cover in a long while.”
As of this writing, MHSAA has only postponed the season for a week for high schools.
The Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges or MACJC announced late last week that it was suspending play in spring athletics until the end of the month, only to have the higher authority in the National Junior College Athletics Association or NJCAA extend that period by three days.
Regardless, when you look at it, you have to feel bad for the coaches and especially the athletes. Now the question is, what do the athletes do to stay in shape? They obviously can’t practice at their respective schools. Right now it looks like a big mess.
Don’t get me wrong. I am all for the safety of the athletes regardless whether it is the pros, college or preps. I agree with a lot of the moves made to ensure the safety of not only the athletes and coaches, but everyone that is associated with a sporting event — fans, arena workers, officials, media, or team personnel.
It definitely upset me when the call came down to cancel the NCAA men’s and women’s basketball tournaments. Those are tournaments that myself and many look forward to every year.
But at the same time, the NCAA went ahead and canceled spring sports all together. which means there will be no College World Series this year.
I get that the NCAA wants to be safe, but cancelling an event that doesn’t take place until mid-June seems a bit excessive.
I did not know that as I watched the NBA cancel its season Wednesday night, that it would be the first domino to fall in this sequence. The NHL soon followed with postponing its season, with MLB, NASCAR and the PGA Tour soon following.
I’m hoping that everyone stays safe at this time and we can soon get back out there and resume sports.