It is no secret that the sports world is being greatly impacted by COVID-19 and its accompanying restrictions. This stands true for the Olivet College Comets. While most sports seasons are seeing delayed starts, men’s basketball is able to start workouts and practices on Oct. 1 instead of the typical start date of Oct. 15.
While this seems like good news for the Comets, they still are not able to use any indoor basketball hoops given the current executive order instated in Michigan. While the team would typically be engaging in voluntary conditioning and weightlifting in the gym, they have to do this outside for the time being. They would also be playing five-on-five a few days a week but are unable to do this as well. Players are not allowed to use any indoor hoops on campus at all yet.
This has not completely halted the progress of the team. Many players have been forced to find alternate places to work individually on their game.
Junior Chris Martin, instead of working out at his local LA Fitness, has been running and doing individual workouts at the middle school near his home.
Martin stated that since his return to Olivet, he has been utilizing the outdoor facilities around campus to continue his training.
“I have been playing basketball outside at the high school and running on the track and field,” said Martin.
The Comets are hoping to get a chance to have a basketball season, even if some restrictions may come along with this. For instance, the National Basketball Association (NBA) has been playing in a ‘bubble’ where team personnel cannot see anyone who is outside of this bubble.
While the situation may not end up being that extreme at Olivet, some restrictions will likely be placed on attendance. But the Comets are just hoping to get to play.
Noah Wiswary, sophomore, stated he hopes to play no matter what, even if there will be zero fans in attendance for any of the games.
“Obviously we would love to have fans, especially for the home games,” said Wiswary, “But if no fans means we can play then let’s do it!”
Head coach Samuel Hargraves also has some doubts about the number of games that the Comets will be able to play this season.
“I don’t think it’s possible we get our regular 25 game schedule with 2 exhibition games, plus the MIAA tournament and an NCAA tournament,” said Hargraves, “I’m hopeful we get all that, except maybe only 20 games.”
It is highly likely that if the Comets do get to play, no matter how many games that be, that they may be playing in a gym containing no fans. This would mean that only team personnel, coaches, players, and trainers, would be able to enter the gym for games.