College sports are finally back! Here at Frederick Community College, the first sports we will see this year are baseball and softball. I wanted to take a look on how the upcoming baseball and softball seasons are going to be conducted. I spoke with the head coach of FCC’s baseball team, Rodney Bennett, to understand how this season is going to be conducted with COVID-19.
According to Bennett, many guidelines have been put in place by the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) to keep the players and coaches safe. Some of these guidelines include mandatory temperature checks before every practice, physical distancing at all times, and players must provide a negative COVID-19 test result before being allowed to practice.
Players must also wear their masks whenever they are not physically active, sitting on the bench, and while coming and leaving the field. These are just a few of the many guidelines players and coaches much follow in order to have their season. If you are a fan and are wondering if you can go to these games, unfortunately, at this time, no fans or spectators are permitted to watch.
Tryouts this year have also looked much different. As explained by Bennett, coaches were permitted to hold tryouts three days a week for a total of eight hours and each coach was only allowed 10 players. With 52 players trying out and three coaches baseball coaches, two separate practices were held in order to follow the new COVID-19 guidelines.
Most of the team’s activities were pushed back this year. After tryouts, the team’s first practice did not take place until Feb. 15, when it is usually held on Jan. 10 during a normal season.
Bennett said the baseball and softball seasons have also been cut short. They will only be playing 26 games, and the teams will only play other Maryland schools. According to the NJCAA’s plan of action, softball teams were permitted 60 consecutive days for practice and scrimmages and a maximum of seven scrimmages; baseball teams were permitted 60 consecutive days for practice and scrimmages and a maximum of 15 scrimmages. March 9 and 10 will mark the opening season for baseball and softball here at FCC.
For more about the schedules, rosters, and updates on how the FCC baseball and softball teams’ seasons are going, visit the athletics page on the Frederick Community College website. For more information about the NJCAA’s plan of action for sports this year, you can visit the athletic page on the Frederick Community College website as well.