Spring Sports Preview

The+Piedmont+Women%27s+Basketball+team+is+the+first+athletic+squad+to+host+an+event+on+the+campus+of+Piedmont+College+this+semester.+There+have+been+no+fans+allowed+and+only+essential+workers+are+allowed+in+the+gym.%0APicture%3A+Karl+L.+Moore

The Piedmont Women’s Basketball team is the first athletic squad to host an event on the campus of Piedmont College this semester. There have been no fans allowed and only essential workers are allowed in the gym. Picture: Karl L. Moore

Davis Barlow, Staff Writer

Piedmont College has begun the process of restarting its sporting programs, but many questions still remain as to the future of collegiate sports. While it is a positive sign to see sports beginning to return, there is much uncertainty surrounding how much competition can be played safely.

 

Under the current regulations, the NCAA has broken sports down into 3 categories, with those categories being “High Risk,” “Medium Risk,” and “Low Risk.” The level of “risk” determines how often and what percent of the team must be tested in order to safely compete according to the NCAA Sports Science department. All of this testing must be paid for by the schools wishing to compete.

 

The issue for most schools is going to be cost. Being able to test student-athletes is going to be expensive, especially for sports that have been deemed “High Risk.” These “High Risk” sports will need to be tested more frequently and more heavily than other sports. However, Piedmont College Athletic Director Jim Peeples believes Piedmont will be capable of playing all its sports.

 

“We’re going to find the dollars,” said Peeples. “Top down leadership is so critical, and you can see from Dr. Mellichamp’s leadership in this situation is that he has wanted to make sure that our students who are involved in extracurriculars have had the opportunity to do what they love.”

 

As Peeples remains hopeful that student athletes can safely compete, the task then moves to the Piedmont College Sports Information office headed by Sports Information Director Danielle Percival. The possibility of having both fall and spring sports occur during the spring semester is looking more and more likely. Doing so would require the Sports Information office to work and cover two semesters of sports in one. However, Percival believes they can make it happen if it is required.

 

“We’re doing the best that we can. Without having those [sports] schedules, it is hard to know exactly just how prepared we really are or can be,” said Percival. “We are certainly doing our best to plan but there will be challenges to come and we’ll do our best to adapt and move forward.”

 

Piedmont is continuing to move forward in hosting home contests. The next home contest is scheduled for November 14th as the Piedmont College Men’s Basketball team will be in action. It will be a closed arena and no fans will be allowed inside.