Contact Sports Amidst a Pandemic

Men’s basketball is having to take many precautions due to Covid-19, while also having to deal with the constant fear of it all being shutdown in an instant.


Photo by Teagan Coley

Varsity player, JJ Cobb jumps up to make a basket.

Lauren Nelson, Staff Writer

The men’s basketball program has had to make vast adjustments to their daily operations on and off the court to keep practices safe. When athletes arrive, they have to go through several steps before the start of practice, including temperature checks and scanning a QR code to fill out a COVID-19 Symptom Check Google Form. Additionally, athletes must keep their mask up and maintain six feet of distance when possible.

“The only time they don’t have to wear a mask is when they are getting something to drink, and we are not allowed to have a water jug there,” said head coach Aaron Taylor. “They either have to bring their own water bottles or they don’t get any. We also have to disinfect the basketballs between JV and varsity practice.”

In addition to following many new protocols, the coaches and players have to adapt to changes on the fly. For example, from December 12, 2020, to January 11, 2021, basketball was shut down due to its designation as a “red-sport.” As a result, the coaches came up with a creative solution so the teams could still grow stronger.

“We were outside on the track doing nothing but conditioning. We weren’t allowed to use any equipment,” said Taylor. “The same parameters were still in place where we had to wear a mask the entire time and maintain 6 feet of distance. We weren’t allowed to be inside the gym or touch a basketball.”

Overall, the varsity and JV teams are doing everything they can to follow the rules and keep playing, with safety and adaptability as a priority.