College Sports Shutting Down due to Pandemic
As we all know due to the pandemic, many things have been changed to comply with the health and safety recommendations of the CDC. At this point, many people feel like we are living in a dystopian world where up until now we have only read about in books or seen in movies. People are scared but at the same time craving normalcy. As some colleges are preparing to do in-person classes for Fall semester, the question about what is going to happen to sports arises.
Not all sports are falling victim to the Pandemic
The Ivy League is the first to cancel all sports for the upcoming Fall semester. Other schools are canceling their sports, but the Ivy League is the first Division I conference to cancel football. The reason why is they are the only league that can afford to do so. For the majority of Division I schools, funding for the school is brought in by their sports programs. Ivy League schools get funding from substantial endowments, not athletics. Schools that are not Ivy League now need to decide between the health of their students and money.
Is the tuition worth it this year?
What makes this decision harder for most colleges and universities is that they may not only have all the money they get from sports but also enrollment. With the foreseeable future being so unpredictable parents are unsure if they want to pay a large amount of tuition just for classes to potentially go online. Or for a school year that is going to be far from normal for their child. People are debating if they should take a gap year, or take classes online at their local community colleges. This would save a lot of money. Freshman students especially will not be able to have the proper first year experience. It will be a challenge to meet people and get involved in clubs and activities while everyone is wearing a mask, six feet apart.
Sports are the moneymakers
Student athletes are unsure of what to expect. Some schools are saying they want to keep their “moneymaker” sports, such as football and basketball. Other sports such as soccer, tennis, volleyball, lacrosse, swimming, etc., will not make the cut. Schools are choosing to shut down the sports that do not make any money for the University. It will be interesting to see what schools do to keep their athletes safe but letting them play at the same time.
It is sad that schools will have to end up choosing between money and the health and safety of the public to keep their institutions running. Everyone is trying their best to make things as normal as possible while also following the rules. As different states are in different stages, what state you go to school in will most likely affect what your Fall semester will look like.
By Natalie Coil