What one health expert recently said about the 2020/2021 athletic season:
Health expert doubts sports will be played in front of fans before the fall of 2021
April 14, 2020
Summary: Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel is quoted. He advised the Obama administration on public health initiatives and is currently the chair of the Department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy at the University of Pennsylvania. He doesn’t believe that large gatherings will be able to be possible until after a vaccine is widely available, likely in 12-18 months. He told a panel at The NY Times, “Larger gatherings — conferences, concerts, sporting events — when people say they’re going to reschedule this conference or graduation event for October 2020, I have no idea how they think that’s a plausible possibility. I think those things will be the last to return. Realistically, we’re talking fall 2021 at the earliest.”
Emmanuel goes on to say that he could see collegiate athletics (also read as HS athletics) returning sooner, but without fans, as the virus seems to have only a minimal impact on those aged 30 and younger.
As difficult as it has been to not be able to participate (or watch) live sports it is a reality we may need to get used to. Most public health experts see a staged roll-out for the re-opening of the country. One way this impacts sports is in the way college coaches recruit and interact with Class of 2021 and 2022 athletes. The fortunate reality for XC and Track and Field athletes is that, for most, training can continue. Performance is measured in time or distance which is easily recorded for proof of performance.
Welcome to the world of athletic transparency and personal accountability. Online resources and social media will become even more essential to help promote sport and athletes. Those that are individually driven to improve will no doubt advance their fitness during this pandemic. Those that truly love the sport will continue to get better. My advice to those who love XC/TF – keep focused on long-term development; stay connected to friends, fellow athletes, and coaches who can help push you, encourage you, and keep you motivated; become a student of the sport by reading and learning as much as you can.
With that said, here are a few ways this site is planning to help athletes, coaches, and fans during this time:
1. Recruiting Profiles: Fill out the recruiting profile forms to help promote yourself to prospective college coaches. This is a FREE service for Class of 2021 and Class of 2022 athletes competing in PIAA District’s 3, 5, and 6. Class of 2023 athletes will be eligible spring of 2021. Here is the link to the recruiting profile form – https://centralparunner.com/2020/03/21/class-of-2021-and-2022-athlete-profiles/
2. Time Trials: Post your time trial results (with video as proof of performance) to YouTube and email me the link. I will help to promote those performances through the website and the site’s social media outlets. If you don’t know how to post to YouTube you can send me your video and I will attempt to post for you on our YouTube channel. Set a new PR and I will update your recruiting profiles with a link to your video.
3. Join Strava: Distance runners tend to be a close knit group. Get to know your competitors by connecting through Strava. Strava provides a great opportunity to comment and encourage each other following workouts. This is also an opportunity for competitors to become friends. I will be creating a centralparunner strava group. Look for updates about this to come out soon!
4. College Coaches: Want to promote your programs? Construct a 1-2 page document highlighting your school and program. Include links and/or videos to your submission. Please limit videos to 2 min or less. Send copies to firstname.lastname@example.org. I will start a new section on the site for this information.
5. Social Media: Please follow us on social media — Twitter: @centralparunner, Instagram: centralparunner. This is the best way to get new updates on all things Central PA XC/TF.
Here’s hoping that the 2020/2021 academic and athletic seasons can return as normal, but if not, this site will continue to be here to promote and support all XC/TF athletes.