TSSAA follows governor, cancels spring sports season

Thursday, April 16, 2020

On Wednesday at 3 p.m. Gov. Bill Lee mandated all schools across Tennessee would remain closed for the rest of the year. Following his announcement, it didnít take two hours for the TSSAA to follow suit and announce all spring sports had been canceled.

While most understand the governing body of high school sports was left with no other decision, the pain of hearing the official word was certainly a blow to not only seniors playing their final season of high school sports, but all teams felt the pain with the announcement of the cancellation of all spring sports.

Itís fair to say with the announcement canceling spring sports, we just made history. However, itís certainly not the history we wanted to be a part of, was it?

Today Iíd like to share a few thoughts regarding the decision, but before doing so it seems only appropriate to say ó to the seniors as well as all players on a roster involving baseball, softball, soccer, tennis and track ó Iím sorry for what you are currently going through.

Though removed from the sports desk for nearly six years now, despite leaving I still tried to keep a keen eye on what was transpiring with most sports, especially spring sports.

Living in this community for nearly all of my life, spring sports have always been looked forward to, for many different reasons. To have the games stripped away due to the current pandemic is a very painful reminder to never take things for granted.

Over the course of the past two months as sporting events were canceled due to the coronavirus, my thoughts centered on the young people, the student athletes, probably praying each and every day that something would happen to save their seasons in a number of respective sports.

In the end, things simply didnít go the way we wanted. The hardest thing about this is the fact we are left to be able to do absolutely nothing about it. The decision was out of our hands, and thatís the sad part to all this. There was simply nothing no one could do about it.

So, this year there will be no seventh-inning come from behind rallies. There will be no walk-off home runs, nobody will have the opportunity to toss a no-hitter. There will be no late-season surge to gain a better seeding for the district tournaments, etc.

In our community, we had a few teams with serious aspirations of reaching for the stars and advancing to the state tournament in a number of sports. Unfortunately, those dreams have been replaced with the nightmare that is the coronavirus.

So, dreams are dashed because of a virus. Instead of going off on a rant about how wrong this is on so many levels for all involved, I instead want to thank those senior members that will not have the opportunity to shine.

For many, this was the last race to run. Most student athletes will continue on at the college level, academically, but this was probably the last shot for most when it comes to participating in sports.

Over the past 24 hours Iíve read posts from coaches and players on social media. These kids as well as their respective coaches are heartbroken, and I donít blame them.

I want to let all involved know that we as a sports-loving community will miss hearing the crack of the bats, the sound of the ball popping in a mitt, seeing your excitement when a goal is scored, and so on and so forth.

At the end of the day, the lesson is to never take anything for granted, sports included. Throughout your life there will always be new challenges and obstacles to overcome, and this latest decision is simply one of those hurdles, and yes we all understand it hurts.

Thank you for your preparation, and though we will never know what may have happened at seasonís end, today in our hearts, youíre all champions!

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