SPEARFISH, S.D. — College athletes, teams and their coaches were put on the spot last season.
Canceled practices, a fraction of the games or canceled sports seasons all together for were some consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic for some teams.
On Friday – Black Hills State University fall sports coaches and their new Director of Athletics, Padraic McMeel, hyping up the season – answering questions on how their ability to remain fluid during their seasons will be key as the delta variant surges.
“Are we flexible enough to make adjustments as we move forward?” McMeel said. “But while we’re doing those adjustments, are we finding ways to continue to progress? And I think if we can, if we can find a good balance of those two and kind of keep on that straight narrow, we’re going to have more success than we’re not going to have.”
Josh Breske – now in his second year as the head coach of BHSU’s football team – but it’s his first full season at the helm.
This year, Breske and his staff may face tough decisions while playing their 11 games this year.
“If we do have, I hope that we don’t but if we do have some sort of breakout, then decisions might have to be made of, you know, who’s going to travel based upon vaccination status and it’s a little bit ugly, it’s not anything that we’re obviously planning to do,” Breske said.
Last year, BHSU’s volleyball team season was moved to the spring and with their newfound experience during the pandemic, there’s nothing like being able to go back to some sort of normalcy, just sooner than a normal offseason.
“We go down on a Thursday, play on a Friday play on a Saturday, come home, instead of you never know what’s going to happen and we don’t know when we’re going to play, so we’re looking forward to a little bit more consistency,” said Kristin Carmichael, the Head Coach for BHSU’s Women’s Volleyball team.
College coaches and programs preparing for another season – but weighing the games vs. the pandemic.