Applause for our new student athletes

Teresa Dulac

Sports Editor

Students who come to play sports in college love their sport. In high school, most athletes come to love or are introduced to their sport, but by college, athletes are dedicated to continue playing that sport.

Freshman who went to college in these years of COVID-19 have had to deal with their seasons being canceled, practices being scarce and scholarships being lost. COVID-19 has given a big blow to college athletics, and so the new student athletes that come and stick to their sport truly show their love for their sport and should be commended.

Almost everyone has had to deal with the mask mandates and wearing a mask in public places and around other people. But the student athletes have had to deal with masks while in practice and at games, which puts a damper on their sport. Social distancing has also been implemented into sports.

COVID-19 has cut practices, games and seasons. The student athletes that have stuck with their sport even though they are forced to play it much less frequently are supported by coaches, schools and fans alike.

Not only have the new student athletes had to deal with disappointment, but college seniors who have played for years have had to deal with losing some of their last moments with their sport.

Very rarely do college athletes continue to play sports upon graduation, so seniors want to play every last second they can. Last year’s seniors lost their last season of their college career, a devastating blow. But the seniors who continue to deal with the struggles of COVID-19 until the end deserve appreciation.

The athletic trainers have also had to deal with the restrictions of COVID-19. They care for our student athletes remarkably, but because of the restrictions, student athletes don’t get as much care as they did in previous semesters. This puts yet another blow on student athletes’ experiences.

Most student athletes are forced to rely on themselves for practice and in keeping up their skills now. With less practices and more social distancing, they are encouraged to practice and stay fit on their own or with smaller groups. This requires a lot more commitment to their sport, as it is easier when you have a team surrounding you to encourage you to push forward. It takes dedication and serious commitment for student athletes to continue to keep up in their seasons and practice their skills.

Student athletes everywhere should be applauded for continuing to play the sport they love with dedication. Playing a sport in college isn’t easy on its own, and with COVID-19 added to the mix, it takes even more dedication.

With PAC approving practices, and games beginning to pick back up again, Franciscan students should show their appreciation for our student athletes and come to cheer them on.

COVID-19 has struck a blow, but student athletes that continue to play with dedication should be commended. It has not been easy, but playing the sport you love is worth it.