This pandemic has affected every student on campus and every program, including athletics at the college. The National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) has cancelled the season for all fall and winter close-contact sports around the country and has rescheduled for the spring of 2021. The majority of championships has been moved to April and the spring sports competition remains with no change.
“This was an unavoidable decision that we all had to deal with, it’s a safe decision for students and the coaching staff,” Ran Chappel, men’s basketball coach, said. “However, it brings up many questions like is this season going to be 27 games as it used to or is it going to be cut down to half? Will players be available to redshirt or will this mess with their eligibility? This is a situation that has been dealt with in the past so the NJCAA is trying to figure out the right way to act.”
It is a peculiar situation for student-athletes who are sophomores and expected to get good highlights in order to transfer or for freshman who expected a good development in their first season. The chances of a season being played are slim, but the basketball team is still getting prepared.
“It is a bit confusing for us since it’s something we never expected, the spring season is still in question, and it could be shut down any second just like the fall season was,” Latre Morrison, student-athlete, said. “So right now [for] Junior College sports it’s in an uncertain ground and we don’t know yet what could happen. We are practicing right now to be prepared for next year in case they do keep their decision stable.”
The NJCAA has been trying to make this change smooth and easy for athletes. However, their eligibility it’s still on the line and scholarships are going to be hard to get for next year.
“The eligibility years that we have left are uncertain right now, if we do play the season then we cannot redshirt but if we don’t play it, we have an extra year to play either Junior or university sport which is really beneficial for some athletes because you get an extra year of scholarship and game time,” Braijion Barnes, student-athlete, said. “Getting a scholarship during this pandemic is going to be really hard especially for sophomores like me that are going to have to transfer because right now a lot of the universities budget is tight due to all the extra expenses that this year forced, and scholarships are not offered like last year.”
Sports Programs at JCCC are still trying to find the right steps to follow this fall, hoping that the spring season is still on schedule teams are practicing and getting prepared for it during this semester.
For all NJCAA COVID-19 updates, visit: NJCAA COVID-19 Homepage