Our country is going through times that most have never seen. Yes, you have a few people still around that remember the Great Depression or World War II but most people could not give you very many details about what that was like. Many can tell you where they were when the Space Shuttle Challenger went down or when the Towers fell on 9/11.
Right now Tiger fans, along with all fans, are experiencing something that they’ve never experienced in their lifetime. Sports as a whole came to a screeching halt a few weeks ago due to the COVID-19 threat and as the days go by, there seem to be more and more questions and very few answers.
Stadium’s Brett McMurphy polled athletic directors across the nation about the potential of not having college football this fall and the glass seems to be at least half full on optimism, although some admitted that they are just trying to see the bright side.
In McMurphy’s poll, nearly one-fifth of the ADs gave a five out of ten on the confidence level that there will be football this fall, and nearly a quarter of the ADs are at a six or lower (24), which compares favorably to those still as nines and ’10s’ on the scale percentage wise (27).
One AD would go on record. It was Big 12 AD Bob Bowlsby. He gave his thoughts on a conference call with media.
“It’s a whole new ballgame. It affects everything we do. It affects the largest portion of our TV contract. If that doesn’t happen, the underpinning of what we know as normal goes away, and we’ll have some major changes to make.”Big 12 AD Bob Bowlsby’s thoughts on possibly not having Football
Fans of any sport want to see their teams succeed. Not at the risk of someone getting sick in the process though. This is what is causing major concern at this point. One point that was recently brought up was that, even if the teams played without fans in the stands, you still would have teams with 100+ players in locker rooms and all it would take would be one player giving it to others on the team and that could make this pandemic even worse.
You have to look at what happens to the money that season ticket holders have possibly paid in already, along with the effect it would have on employees if the stadiums are empty because they can’t play football.
Another sad part is that student athletes have no idea what’s next in their future. For instance, Travis Etienne And Amari Rodgers both made the decision to forgo the NFL Draft and return for their senior seasons. What now for them? Trevor Lawrence is expected to be a hot commodity after this coming season and possibly the top overall pick in the 2021 draft. What happens to his draft stock if there is no football this coming season?
Then you have to look at current and upcoming scholarships. Even though spring sports and their scholarships do cost universities money, those numbers are weak in comparison to a football team with 100+ students on the roster. Then there are the band members and cheerleaders. It’s more than just eligibility. It takes revenue to sustain even the worst of programs.
However, most fans understand that it’s about safety first. Both for themselves, the players and the coaches. The only thing we can do at this point is to follow the guidelines and advice being shared by Governor McMaster and President Trump. Wash hands, try to avoid your hands in your eyes and face as much as possible, and practice social distancing (stay at home if at all possible).
Even the Tuscaloosa Mayor is using the Alabama fans love of football to try to get them to follow the guidelines that have been set.
“If I can’t appeal to your patriotism. I want to appeal to your love of Alabama football.”Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox trying time get people to practice social distancing
So at the end of the day, as Tiger fans wait for the answers to these many questions, there is only one thing to ask. That is to please follow whatever rules and guidelines that are set for you and your area so that when the light is visible at the end of this very dark tunnel, you can once again enjoy another Clemson win in Tigertown.