by Jack Belanger ’21
I remember back in the spring when Providence College canceled all of its spring sports. I had joked with my friends that COVID-19 was slowly taking away my ability to run the sports section. Of course at the time, I thought we would cover how the Big East Tournament and March Madness got canceled. I also thought that I would have to navigate through only a few weeks of quarantine.
Oh, how the tables have turned.
Now, we are faced with the possibility of having to go through an entire semester without seeing any athletic competition on campus. The Big East has already canceled all of its fall sports, which is the season with the most overlapping play. There has been no official start date announced for college hockey or basketball, though it is hard to imagine either sport starting at its usual date. Even if there is no delay for basketball, the earliest any game would occur would be mid-November. Hockey usually begins early in October but is more likely at this point to begin around the same time as basketball.
Despite the challenge of having no sports to cover on campus in the near future, we are committed to expanding and focusing our coverage away from the fields. Our weekly Sports Shorts feature and game recaps will be put on hold and will be replaced with more in-depth stories. Our goal is to have more stories involving interviews with athletes, coaches, administrators, and alumni. These interviews will allow them to share their own unique stories and to give their perspectives on the current issues within our society. Having fewer games to cover will also give us the opportunity to look back at some of the biggest moments in Friars sports history, such as celebrating the 100th anniversary of the first game the men’s basketball team ever played. We will also report how the athletic department plans to bring sports back onto campus and the steps they are taking to ensure the safety of the athletes.
Today, sports have become a big part in advancing the civil rights movement and other problems plaguing the country. While the vast majority of these voices come from the professional ranks, it is our job to also give a voice to collegiate athletes and coaches. Some of the biggest faces of the College are members of the athletics department and it is imperative to give them a venue to share their stories.