Brenna Roberts ‘21
The end of August typically means students coming back to campus. Students are usually moving their things in and hanging out with friends they have not seen since before the summer. As classes begin, many people grow excited about football games and fall weather with friends. But this year has been different and will be different from what we normally know.
For the students of Merrimack, many people went back to campus with new restrictions and rules, especially about being able to leave their own dorms. Some people even chose to stay home and do remote learning. There won’t be any football on campus this fall and we don’t yet know about other sports. It is hard to fathom a world without sports. A college without athletes rushing from class to practice or wearing their team gear the day of a game. COVID-19 has turned all of our worlds upside down. Where many people are hopeful there will be some chance for competition, it is hard to see that as logical.
Our school is smaller than most, so it is easier to contain the number of COVID-19 cases. So, unlike many schools across the country, we have only had four reported cases so far out of 10,000 tests, which makes us incredibly lucky. Although this is a good sign, Merrimack cannot resume gameplay unless the entire NEC conference decides it is a good idea. Many teams are still able to practice in small groups but it is hard to go into practice every day with a hard-work mindset when you don’t have any competition to work toward.
Remaining hopeful and positive is the most important thing to do for athletes. Where getting to play one’s sport and getting to watch the sporting events we love is a right of passage, there are more important things happening right now and that includes keeping our campus safe and healthy. Our time will come and we will be happy to compete and watch our favorite sports again. But for now, all we can do is wait.